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- Individuals close to Former Vice President Joe Biden are suspicious that Bernie Sanders is involved in the accusations that he inappropriately touched multiple women.
- Biden is still moving forward with the launch of a 2020 presidential campaign.
- One supporter of Biden said the former VP is ready to "kill Bernie" if he jumps in the race.
Former Vice President Joe Biden’s inner circle are reportedly stewing over the surge of accusations that the prospective 2020 presidential candidate inappropriately touched multiple women and think Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ team could be behind the renewed focus.
Axios reported Tuesday that several individuals close to Biden are suspicious that the Sanders’ camp are "at least partly behind the anti-Biden campaign."
In addition, one of Biden’s top backers believe he is still moving forward with an upcoming announcement to run for president and "is ready to kill Bernie" when he jumps in the race, according to Axios.
Biden has been the subject of controversy in recent days after a former Nevada state assemblywoman wrote an op-ed accusing him of inappropriately touching and kissing her head during a 2014 campaign event.
The woman, Lucy Flores, added that the incident was an issue of personal space, not any kind of assault or harassment.
"For the record, I don’t believe that it was a bad intention. I’m not in any way suggesting that I felt sexually assaulted or sexually harassed. I felt invaded. I felt there was a violation of my personal space," Flores told MSNBC. "And it’s been dismissed as if it’s just Biden being Biden. Boys will be boys. No big deal. It is a big deal."
But another woman came forward on Monday accusing Biden of inappropriately touching her at a 2009 political fundraiser, the Hartford Courant reported.
Biden spokesman Bill Russo pushed back on allegations and the use of other photos depicting Biden as invading personal space. The women in the photos in question have also spoken out to clarify there was no wrongdoing involved.
"These smears and forgeries have existed in the dark recesses of the internet for a while," Russo said. "And to this day, right wing trolls and others continue to exploit them for their own gain."
But Biden is still facing mounting criticism, both from the field of Democratic presidential candidates and high-profile Democratic leadership. Though none are characterizing his actions disqualifying from the 2020 race.
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