Former Vice President Joe Biden “shared his regret” with Anita Hill during a “private discussion” about his role in Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’ confirmation hearings nearly three decades ago, a spokesperson said Thursday.
A Biden spokesperson told Fox News that the newly announced presidential candidate spoke to Hill and thanked her for all she has done in her pursuit of change. He also apologized for what she “endured.”
“Vice President Biden has spoken with Anita Hill. They had a private discussion where he shared with her directly his regret for what she endured and his admiration for everything she has done to change the culture around sexual harassment in this country,” the statement read.
Former Vice President Joe Biden,left, served as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1991 when Anita Hill, right, testified allegations of sexual misconduct by then-Supreme Court nominee Judge Clarence Thomas. (AP)
Biden, 76, served as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee in 1991 when Hill accused Thomas of sexual harassment during his Supreme Court confirmation process.
Similarly, Biden seemed to regret his actions last month when he said that Hill, a black woman, should not have been forced to face a panel of “a bunch of white guys.”
"To this day I regret I couldn't come up with a way to give her the kind of hearing she deserved," he said at an event in New York on March 26. "I wish I could have done something."
But in an interview with The New York Times, Hill stopped short of calling Biden’s words an apology.
“I cannot be satisfied by simply saying I’m sorry for what happened to you. I will be satisfied when I know there is real change and real accountability and real purpose,” she said.
Hill told The Times that the conversation, which took place earlier this month, is just the beginning of Biden’s apology tour, pointing to the recent allegations of inappropriate touching leveled against the former vice president.
“The focus on apology to me is one thing,” she told the paper. “But he needs to give an apology to the other women and to the American public because we know now how deeply disappointed Americans around the country were about what they saw.”
Biden officially announced his bid for the White House on Thursday, several weeks after allegations of inappropriate touching were made against him.
Fox News’ Liam Quinn contributed to this report.