Transcript for Oct. 11, 1991: Clarence Thomas, Anita Hill testify on Capitol Hill
Two remarkably composed witnesses giving diametrically opposed versions of their relationship ten years ago professor hill. Said she was embarrassed and humiliated by sexually explicit remarks made by her boss Clarence Thomas. Why did she not come forward before because she said I did not want to let the behavior control Mike choices. Judge Thomas denied saying anything out of line he denounced the whole process and said no job is worth what I've been through. We begin a long report we've ABC's Jim wooten. Through hallway is reverberating with the cheers and chants of his supporters. Judge Thomas headed into the hearing to present himself to the committee and the country as a victim who would be a victim no more. I have never in all my life felt such hurt. Such pain. Such agony his indignation was riveting. Eloquent. From the very beginning. Charges were leveled against me from the shadows. Charges of drug abuse. Anti semitism. Wife be. Drug use by family members. That I was a quota appointment. Confirmation conversion. And much much more. And now this this is not American. This is cop got yes. It has got to stop. It must stop for the benefit of future nominees. And our country. Enough. Is enough. With his why offend his I'm Brendan renters senator Danforth behind him where he seemed at the very brink of withdrawing his nomination. I will not provide the rope for my own lynching. Or for further humiliation. No job is worth what I've been through no job. No harm in my life has been so debilitating. Confirm me if you want. Don't confirm mean if you are so let. But let this process hands. But he was not withdrawing the charges he said our faults. Never ask her for a date and never harassed her but I have not sad. We're done the things that Anita Hill has alleged. I cannot imagine anything. But I said or did to Anita Hill that could have been mistaken for sexual harassment. But wood bats that. He if there is anything that I have said that has been misconstrued. By Anita Hill or anyone else. To be sexual harassment. That I can say that I am so very sorry and I wish I had no. I find it particularly troubling that should never raised any hint. That she was unconscious. People with me then when democratic chairman Biden began questioning Thomas he announced that professor hill's original affidavit to the committee. Her sworn statement of charges against the judge. Would not be used by him or anyone else at her request to Republican has strenuously objected and he has a right. To face the accuser and everything that accuser SaaS and beat doesn't. And I'm gonna resign from this committee than that ironically that set the stage for an immediate rebuttal of the judges impassioned denials. Biden dismissed Thomas and called professor hill her testimony was not the sort usually heard in the halls of the senate me. The judge Thomas she said repeatedly ask her out. Despite her consistent refusals and turned their business conversations into vivid discussions of sexual matters. He's. Oak about acts that he'd seen and pornographic films. Involving such matters as women having sex with animals. And down signed group sex or rates means. He talked about pornographic materials. Depicting individuals with large penises. Or large breasts involved in various expects. On several occasions. Thomas told me graphically of his own sexual prowess. Because I was extremely. Uncomfortable talking about sex with him at all and particularly in such a graphic way. I told him that I did not want to talk about these sent. She recalled an episode involving a soft drink in his office at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission he got up from the table. At which we all working. Went over to his death. To get the cult. Looked at the camp an asked. Who is put pubic hair on my Coke and she said on other occasions he referred to the size of his own penis. As being larger than normal and he also spoke on some occasions of the pleasures he had given. To women. With or affects. After making his opening statement this morning judge Thomas left the committee room and went home where he may have watch professor hill testify on television. As millions of Americans heard her version of events was light years apart from his. The members of the Judiciary Committee got their chance to ask about the contradictions. During the afternoon. Once again here's Jim wooten. Republican Specter wants a Philadelphia prosecutor focused on professor hill's willingness to move out with Thomas from the education departments have been Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. His behavior had changed she said and he told her he couldn't guarantees that her old job would continue. What about telephone calls to Thomas after she'd left their jobs. Like their the issue is garbage those telephone messages. Do not indicate. That. I'll which they are being used to indicate. That is that somehow I was pursuant and you sing something more than eight or until a fellow relationship professional relationship. EG offers congratulations on his marriage she says only when his secretary brother some of those if you why didn't you file charges against Thomas then. How could you allow. This kind of reprehensible conduct to go on right and a headquarters. Without doing something about I may have. Sharpton duty a responsibility that I hand. And Spector pressed professor hill on whether she was told last month. That her confidential affidavit would be used to force Thomas to withdraw his nomination. She couldn't recall she's. You testified with some specificity about what happened ten years ago. I would ask it refresh your recollection as to what happened with in the last. Democrat Leahy returned to her charges to the number of times Thomas allegedly asked her out. I would say. Ten times navy I don't know five to ten. And use it no next time and Leahy raised again whether she objected to thomas' talk about pornography. I would. Say. With specifically with a pornographic. Movies or material I would say that I really not interested in in discussing this I'm and comfortable with your talking about this. It kind of material fence I would prefer that not to discuss this with you. You be that. Clear about it. With the discussions in when news is that sometimes I would have to say is more more than once. Yes they would. Back to senator Specter trying to undermine her credibility with an affidavit from an acquaintance or professor hill. Alleging that in 1983. He regarded her as unstable. As having a problem with being rejected by men she was attracted to. Professor hill said she had no idea what that might have referred. Democrat Heflin a you have scorned woman. Do you have a martyr complex. No I have no. And have come and ask her what she thought thomas' motives might event. Do you think giving. He'd. There are some pleasure out of seeing you really use. Involvement. I think so yes he wanted to see me vulnerable. And that. If I were vulnerable than he could. Extract from me whatever you want it whether it was sexual or otherwise that I would be at his under his control. If you can't spend all your suggested that she'd contradicted herself and her recollection yes of course she'd been told would be the end result different charges. I think we need him prior interpretation of finance then we'll want while. What what am I missing here there restaurant will be witness speak literal word drug and having words put in her mouth Thomas chairman I object of that. I object of that ship personally I'm asking questions here Centre county has anything to say about him participate in this hearing. Less than a. Really come down. Leave before they broke for dinner who want to Thomas his staunchest supporters ask professor hill why she'd waited so long to tell her story. All we heard for a 103 days is about most remarkable man and nobody has come forward. And they scoured his every shred of life. And nobody but you and another witness apparently. Whose alleging known sexual harassment. Has come forward. And so. Mainly mainly. His seems to mean you didn't really intend to kill him. But your my. If what you say this man said to you. Occurred. Why in God's name. When he left his position of power. Or status. Or authority over you and you left it. In 1983. Why in God's name would you ever speak. To a man. Like that the rest of your life. That's a very good question. And I'm sure that I can not answer that to your satisfaction. That is one of the things that I have tried to do today. But one of the things she was not trying to do she said was to conduct a vendetta against judge Thomas. It was a grueling experience for a professor bill. For the senate that was the kind of exposure and scrutiny they neither wants nor need to. And for a judge Thomas perhaps more of the pain and agony. He expressed so eloquently in his appearance this morning.
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