WASHINGTON (CBS/CNN) — Former Vice President Joe Biden released a video on Twitter Wednesday and said he will be “more mindful about respecting personal space in the future.” The video comes in the wake of allegations he made women feel uncomfortable in their encounters. Biden, however, doesn’t apologize to the women in the video.
“Social norms are changing. I understand that, and I’ve heard what these women are saying,” he wrote on Twitter. “Politics to me has always been about making connections, but I will be more mindful about respecting personal space in the future. That’s my responsibility and I will meet it.”
In the video, Biden said he has always tried to “make a human connection,” by shaking hands and hugging people.
“I’ve always believed governing, quite frankly, life for that matter, is about connecting, connecting with people. That won’t change but I will be more mindful and respectful of people’s personal space and that’s a good thing, a good thing,” said Biden.
Biden said that he understands that “the boundaries of protected personal space have been reset.”
Biden’s camp dove into damage control mode Friday after Lucy Flores, a former Nevada assemblywoman, penned an essay detailing a 2014 encounter during which the former vice president made her feel “uneasy, gross and confused” when he came up from behind her and kissed the back of her head. After a series of carefully-worded statements attributed to his spokesman, Biden on Sunday released a statement of his own addressing the allegation.
“In my many years on the campaign trail and in public life, I have offered countless handshakes, hugs, expressions of affection, support and comfort,” Biden said in a statement that was released shortly before Flores appeared in her first television interview. “And not once — never — did I believe I acted inappropriately. If it is suggested I did so, I will listen respectfully. But it was never my intention.”
He added, “I may not recall these moments the same way, and I may be surprised at what I hear. But we have arrived at an important time when women feel they can and should relate their experiences, and men should pay attention. And I will.”
When a second woman came forward claiming Biden made her feel uncomfortable at a 2009 Connecticut fundraiser, his team pointed to his response from Sunday. Biden’s team again pointed to that statement when two more women told the New York Times that Biden made them feel uncomfortable by the way he touched them.
CBS News has previously reported that Biden is in the final stages of preparing for a 2020 presidential campaign.
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