Former Rep. Pat Schroeder, who advised Anita Hill during Justice Clarence Thomas’ confirmation hearings, responded to presidential candidate Joseph R. Biden’s comments that he did “everything in his power” to help her.
“Well, I have a very different take then he has,” she said. “We were told we could not come into the caucus because we were strangers … as the chairman, he wasn’t even going to let her testify. Then went on early in the morning and wouldn’t let the other woman who showed up in the morning testify,” Ms. Schroeder, a Colorado Democrat, said in an interview with CNN’s “Right Now” show.
Mr. Biden was the Senate Judiciary Committee chairman at the time.
“What he told us really says to me ‘one more of the boys club.’ He says to us, ‘You really don’t understand, I promised Sen. [John] Danforth in the gym that this would be a quick hearing and would get this to the floor very fast,’ ” she continued.
Ms. Schroeder added it’s much more important to make sure Ms. Hill “is satisfied” with Mr. Biden’s response, adding “she’s the one who had to bear this for years.”
“She was really made a scapegoat by an awful lot of people for this thing, and from my perspective, what I’m really concerned about: The Senate was such an old boys network, and I really want to know that he sees women as equals,” she said.
“I mean not just saying it, but he really works with them as equals, respects their opinion as equals, doesn’t see them as strangers and doesn’t kind of dismiss them. … That kind of thing really bothered me,” Ms. Schroeder added.
The former vice president said during an interview with ABC’s “The View” that he “did everything in my power to do what I thought was within the rules.”
“I’m sorry she was treated the way she was treated. There were a lot of mistakes that were made across the board and for those I apologize,” Mr. Biden said.
He didn’t personally apologize for Ms. Hill’s treatment.
Ms. Hill has rebuffed apology attempts made by Mr. Biden, saying she “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 told The New York Times.