Lawmakers read aloud Stanford victim’s statement on House floor

A bipartisan group of lawmakers on Wednesday read aloud the searing statement from the victim of a sexual assault at Stanford University that has sparked national outrage.

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) led a group of more than a dozen lawmakers in taking turns reading the entire statement, which goes on for more than 7,000 words.

Speier, as well as Rep. Ted PoeLloyd (Ted) Theodore PoeCook shifts two House GOP seats closer to Dem column Five races to watch in the Texas runoffs Five Republican run-offs to watch in Texas MORE (R-Texas), read portions of the woman’s statement on the House floor last week. But Wednesday’s nearly hourlong reading encapsulated the entire statement the victim provided to BuzzFeed, which has since accumulated millions of views.

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The victim’s statement has drawn the attention of members of Congress, Vice President Joe BidenJoseph (Joe) Robinette BidenElection Countdown: Small-donor donations explode | Russian woman charged with midterm interference | Takeaways from North Dakota Senate debate | O'Rourke gives 'definitive no' to 2020 run | Dems hope Latino voters turn Arizona blue Clinton aide: Chances 'highly unlikely' but 'not zero' Hillary will run for president again The Hill's Morning Report — Presented by the Coalition for Affordable Prescription Drugs — Trump, Obama head to swing states with Senate majority in balance MORE and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonRepublicans bail on Coffman to invest in Miami seat Katy Perry praises Taylor Swift for diving into politics Election Countdown: Small-donor donations explode | Russian woman charged with midterm interference | Takeaways from North Dakota Senate debate | O'Rourke gives 'definitive no' to 2020 run | Dems hope Latino voters turn Arizona blue MORE.

In the statement, the woman detailed the impact of the sexual assault committed by former Stanford University student Brock Turner. Turner was caught in the act of sexually assaulting the woman while she was intoxicated and unconscious behind a dumpster at a fraternity party by two students riding past on their bicycles. 

The case drew widespread national outrage this month after Judge Aaron Persky handed down a sentence of only six months in county jail, compared to the maximum of 14 years in state prison. Turner will also have to register as a lifetime sex offender.

Persky explained his decision by expressing concern that a harsher sentence would have a “severe impact” on Turner’s life, especially in light of his prospects as a swimmer. 

That led to the victim, who has chosen not to make her name public, addressing the impact of the attack on her life in remarks made directly to Turner at the sentencing hearing.

"The probation officer’s recommendation of a year or less in county jail is a soft time­out, a mockery of the seriousness of his assaults, an insult to me and all women," the victim said in her statement. 

"If a first time offender from an underprivileged background was accused of three felonies and displayed no accountability for his actions other than drinking, what would his sentence be?" she asked.

The outcry over what critics blasted as a light sentence has led to petitions calling for Persky’s removal from the bench. Poe also called for Persky’s departure in a House floor speech last week.

In the meantime, Persky was removed this week from presiding over another sexual assault case after a prosecutor questioned his ability to handle it fairly.

Earlier Wednesday, Clinton praised the victim during an interview with The Huffington Post.

“It took great courage, and I think she has done an important service for others,” Clinton said. “What I’ve heard about this case is deeply concerning. It is clear campus sexual assault continues to be a serious problem. And I’ve said before and I will continue to say it is not enough to condemn it. We must find ways to end it.”