The ex-husband of Jill Biden has accused her of breaking up their marriage by cheating on him with then-Sen. Joseph R. Biden, a bombshell claim that the Biden campaign adamantly denies.
Bill Stevenson, 72, told Inside Edition on Monday that he was “betrayed” by his first wife and Mr. Biden, saying that they met in 1972 and became involved in 1974, which challenges the story long told by the Bidens about their relationship starting with a blind date in 1975.
“I was betrayed by the Bidens,” said Mr. Stevenson on the show. “Joe was my friend. Jill was my wife.”
Mrs. Biden’s spokesperson denied the claims by Mr. Stevenson, who first made the allegations last month in an interview with the [U.K.] Daily Mail, accusing him of seeking to publicize a book about his life that he plans to publish.
“These claims are fictitious, seemingly to sell and promote a book,” the spokesperson told Inside Edition. “The relationship of Joe and Jill Biden is well documented. Jill Biden separated from her first husband irreconcilably in the fall of 1974 and moved out of their marital home. Joe and Jill Biden had their first date in March of 1975, and they married in June of 1977.”
The allegation comes in the final stretch of the 2020 presidential race between the Democrat Biden and President Trump. The Washington Times has reached out to the Biden campaign for comment.
While most people may be unaware that Mrs. Biden was previously married, Mr. Stevenson is a well-known figure in Delaware: He founded The Stone Balloon Tavern and Concert Hall in Newark, located near the University of Delaware, and was inducted two years ago into the Delaware Rock and Roll Society.
He was named in 2012 by Delaware Today as one of the state’s 50 most influential figures of the last 50 years, a list that includes Mr. Biden. Mr. Stevenson was also reportedly convicted on a federal fraud charge involving passing bad checks and sentenced to six months’ probation.
Mr. Stevenson said he and Jill met Mr. Biden and his then-wife Neilia Biden in 1972 during his first Senate campaign and threw a fundraiser for the then-county councilman in August that raised between $2,500 and $3,000.
“Right before the election in ‘72, Jill, Joe, Neilia and I were in his kitchen,” Mr. Stevenson said. “How do you forget that?”
Four months later, Neilia Biden died in a car crash that also killed the Bidens’ baby daughter, and Jill began spending more time with Mr. Biden, including babysitting for his sons Beau and Hunter, Mr. Stevenson said.
He said that he became suspicious in 1974 when Jill turned down an opportunity to meet Bruce Springsteen, who was playing at the club, to watch the Biden boys. At the time, Mr. Biden was 31, and Jill was 23.
The Delaware Rock and Roll Society said on its website, “As history knows, Bill met, and convinced Bruce Springsteen in 1974 to bring The E Street Band to Newark.”
“I had no idea she and Joe were that kind of friendly,” Mr. Stevenson told the Daily Mail in the Aug. 17 interview. “Then one of her best friends told me she thought Joe and Jill were getting a little too close.”
Two months later, Mr. Stevenson said a man approached him at the bar about a fender-bender involving Jill’s brown Corvette.
“He looks at me and he says, ‘Oh, she wasn’t driving.’ I said, ‘Her beloved Corvette, she wasn’t driving it?’ He goes, ‘Sen. Biden was driving it.’ And I went, ‘What?’ ” Mr. Stevenson said.
When he confronted her, “She didn’t say anything, she just looked at me. I said, ‘You gotta go. You gotta go get your own place,’” he said, adding that the divorce became final in May 1975.
As recounted in the 2010 biography “Joe Biden” by Jules Witcover, Mr. Biden noticed a photo of Jill on a poster at the airport. His brother Frank Biden said he knew her and gave him her phone number. He called and convinced her to break another date to go out that night, during which she made it clear “she was not looking for a serious relationship.”
“She’d married young, was separated, and in the process of getting divorced,” Mr. Biden wrote in his memoir, the book said. “Jill liked her life as a single woman.”
The book said Jill later recalled that on the night of Mr. Biden’s 1972 election, “she and her dinner date had stopped by his celebration at the Hotel du Pont, where she shook hands with Joe and Neilia.”
Mr. Stevenson insisted he wasn’t seeking revenge with the allegations, saying he has been happily married for 34 years to his second wife Linda and bears Mr. Biden no ill will.
“I’m not surprised he fell in love with Jill. Everyone who meets Jill falls in love with her immediately,” he told the Daily Mail. “It’s hard not to.”
He also said he voted twice for the Obama-Biden ticket but now supports President Trump based on his stance on policing issues.
“Listen. I’ve said from the very beginning, I have no hard feelings about Joe, Jill, the affair. It means nothing to me now,” Mr. Stevenson said. “Everybody’s saying, ‘Bill, you’re being so mean bringing this up now.’ But if I don’t do it now, it’s never going to be able to be brought up.”
He has been accused on social media of seeking to smear Mr. Biden at the behest of Republicans, which he denied.
“It’s years ago, but guess what, it’s so current right now because he [Biden] is picking on people about character,” Mr. Stevenson said.