Last Friday, in an essay published on the Cut, former Nevada lieutenant governor nominee Lucy Flores wrote about how uncomfortable she felt when Joe Biden smelled her hair and kissed the back of her head at a campaign event in 2014. Since then, several more women have come forward to accuse the former vice-president of inappropriately touching them. And one week later, Biden showed us all that he’s taking this all as seriously as you’d expect.
Shortly after Biden issued a non-apology video in which he vowed to respect people’s personal space, he decided the time was right to start joking about his past conduct. At the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers conference on Friday, Biden hugged IBEW president Lonnie Stephenson as he took the stage to deliver a speech. That’s when his attempt at comedy kicked in.
Biden joked to the crowd, “I had permission to hug Lonnie,” and mimicked a gesture of hugging. The crowd laughed and cheered.
He then went on to discuss union workers and American manufacturing, per CBS News. But at the end of his speech, Biden made a second inappropriate-touching joke, putting his arm around a young boy and announcing, “By the way, he gave me permission to touch him.”
In just one week, Biden has been accused by at least eight women of touching them in a manner that made them uncomfortable. When asked about the allegations by reporters after his speech, Biden said he “wouldn’t be surprised” if more women came forward. He also said, “I’m sorry I didn’t understand more. I’m not sorry for any of my intentions. I’m not sorry for anything that I’ve ever done. I’ve never been disrespectful intentionally to a man or a woman.”
Can’t wait for more jokes from this one.