Manchester State Rep faces criticism, calls for resignation after comments against Biden accuser

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State Rep. Richard Komi on October 9, 2019 at a Joe Biden rally. Photo/Andrew Sylvia

MANCHESTER, N.H. — State Representative Richard Komi (D-Manchester) is facing criticism after a tweet he made on Friday disputing sexual assault claims made by Tara Reade, a former staffer of former U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden.

In the tweet, Komi disputed Reade’s claim that Biden inserted his fingers into her vagina, saying that would not be possible without “cooperation.”

When reached for comment on Friday evening, Komi had remorse for how he shared his opinion, but not for his support of Biden.

“I wish I had worded my words more appropriately. It was not intended to lessen the pain that sexual assault survivors face all their lives,” he said  “I do not believe Joe (Biden) is the type of person who would do anything to hurt a woman.”

The New Hampshire Republican Party released a statement on Twitter calling out state Democrats for Komi’s comments. The New Hampshire Democratic Party echoed a call from New Hampshire House of Representatives Speaker Steve Shurtleff (D-Concord) that Komi should resign.

“Representative Komi’s comment is wrong, inappropriate, and offensive to all Democrats, and does not reflect the values of our party,” said New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley.

Richard Komi tweet

Komi said he has been in discussions with Shurtleff over the comment and will not make an immediate decision over resignation from the New Hampshire House of Representatives.

Komi, a former refugee who was resettled to the United States in 1999 and was sent to Manchester, was first elected to the New Hampshire House of Representatives in November 2008 and served from 2009 to 2010, according to his official statehouse bio. He is one of three State Representatives from Hillsborough District 43, which consists of Manchester Wards 4,5,6,7, and is serving his second term.

UPDATE: The New Hampshire Union Leader is reporting that Komi submitted his letter of resignation late on Friday. An associate of Komi told Manchester Ink Link that he was not available for comment on Saturday morning.

About this Author

Andrew Sylvia

Assistant EditorManchester Ink Link

Born and raised in the Granite State, Andrew Sylvia has written approximately 10,000 pieces over his career for outlets across Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont. On top of that, he's a licensed notary and licensed to sell property, casualty and life insurance, he's been a USSF trained youth soccer and futsal referee for the past six years and he can name over 60 national flags in under 60 seconds according to that flag game app he has on his phone, which makes sense because he also has a bachelor's degree in geography (like Michael Jordan). He can also type over 100 words a minute on a good day.