Excerpts From Anita Hill’s Interview With The Times

STOLBERG: Did you feel that he lied to you about that?

HILL: I leave you to say whether he lied or not. What he told me turned out not to be the case. If you want to call that lying, that’s fine. I think, at the very least, I would say it was misleading.

STOLBERG: In 2014, you told me that you felt he had done “a terrible job,” and I’m wondering if you can just elaborate on that.

HILL: I can elaborate on it by saying that [inaudible] as the chair, I think there were moments when he could have exercised control over the process itself, over the range of information that the Republicans were presenting. So, for example, when there was no objection when [Senator] Orrin Hatch started waving a copy of “The Exorcist” during the hearing. There was no response from the chair until well into a whole lot of things that had happened, including a press conference where Senator [John C.] Danforth brought forward a physician who had never interviewed me and accused me of erotomania.


HILL: And let me be clear about this, and I hope you’ll print this. This hearing and all of what went on was certainly about me, because I was the witness, and it was also about the other witnesses who wanted to testify and who were accused of all sorts of things from the Senate floor by the Senate — by the committee members in terms of their charges — but were not called to testify. But it is really about the debasement of the process.


HILL: The Senate Judiciary Committee hearing for a person to sit on the Supreme Court in a lifetime appointment is especially a place where people want the process to have integrity. And what happened was that the process went completely off track, it was not managed well, there was no transparency; there was no clarity as to what information was being shared. And I will just say this: It set the stage — from 1991 — set the stage for what happened in 2018.


HILL: It set the stage for what people now think are sham hearings, which are supposed to be about truth and about finding the best people for positions for power, testing their character and fitness for those positions. But instead it set the stage for, “Lets just make political choices that are aimed at more protecting our positions as senators.” More about protecting a calendar which they were saying over and over again, “We’ve got to get this done quickly because we want to move on.” It was more about that than assuring the American public that you have the right people in these offices and on the Supreme Court.

STOLBERG: And do you hold then-Senator Biden personally responsible for all that?

HILL: I hold him responsible certainly for what happened in 1991, and to the extent that many of the same things that happened in 1991 followed in 2018, there is a connection. There is clearly a connection.

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