Apparently, demanding that men not creep up behind women is a litmus test for perfection, according to failed gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams.
Appearing on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Thursday, Stacey Abrams openly defended former Vice President Joe Biden, even as he faces seven — you heard that right, seven — accusations of inappropriate touching of several different women, reports HuffPost. Abrams said that Americans should hold their leaders accountable while not expecting them to be perfect.
“I am friends with Lucy Flores and I appreciate her bringing her story forward,” Abrams said. “I also have deep respect for Vice President Joe Biden.”
Biden’s accusers say he inappropriately touched them in professional settings, often by caressing their shoulders or planting an unwanted kiss on their neck or head. “He made me feel uneasy, gross, and confused,” Biden accuser Lucy Flores wrote in The Cut. “The vice president of the United States of America had just touched me in an intimate way reserved for close friends, family, or romantic partners — and I felt powerless to do anything about it.”
Abrams said that Biden’s so-called “apology” should be sufficient enough to propel him for a 2020 run.
“We cannot have perfection as a litmus test,” Abrams said. “The responsibility of leaders is to not be perfect but to be accountable, to say I’ve made a mistake, I understand it and here’s what I’m going to do to reform as I move forward. And I think we see Joe Biden doing that.”
“We’re going to find out things about everybody running for office ― whether it’s the presidency or the school board ― and we have to, as a people, be ready to forgive,” Abrams continued. “But forgiveness does not mean you accept it, unless what you see is accountability and an attempt at reformation.”
In a video released on Wednesday, Biden did not exactly apologize, but only admitted to making people feel uncomfortable due to his affectionate nature — the primary excuse Biden supporters have employed to deflect from his creepy behavior. In the same video, Biden said “social norms have changed,” as if to imply there was a time and place in America when men could just caress a woman’s shoulders and plant a kiss without any permission.
I’ve never thought of politics as cold and antiseptic; I’ve always thought about connecting with people. As I said, shaking hands, hands on the shoulder, a hug, encouragement. Now it’s all about taking selfies together; social norms have begun to change, they’ve shifted, and the boundaries of protecting personal space have been reset, and I get it. I get it; I hear what they’re saying. I understand it and I’ll be much more mindful; that’s my responsibility. My responsibility and I’ll meet it.
It makes sense that Abrams would come out swinging so emphatically for Biden, given that she has been rumored to be his potential 2020 running mate — although she has denied the veracity of those rumors.
Both Sens. Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) have seized the moment by announcing they believe Biden’s accusers.