In a secret recording, Colorado U.S. Senate candidate Ken Buck told an alleged rape victim in 2006 that it appeared to Buck, given the circumstances in the case, that she had given the alleged rapist consent to have sex with her.
Trouble is, when Buck told this to the victim, the alleged rapist had admitted that the victim had told him she did not want to have sex and that he understood that he raped her.
Nonetheless, Buck decided later to tell the Greeley Tribune that a jury could conclude that the case was one of "buyer's remorse," meaning that the victim wanted the liaison but later regretted it.
Now, five years later, how does Buck, who's in the midst of a political campaign that could be decided by women voters, explain the "buyer's remorse" comment?
In a September interview, reported in the Denver Post today, Buck said he meant that the "jury could conclude" that the victim had "buyer's remorse," not that the victim had buyer's remorse herself.
But since Buck's September interview, a major change occurred. The rape victim leaked a recording of a 2006 conversation she had with Buck about her case.
That's when Buck stated that her actions suggested to him that she had given her consent to have sex to the suspected rapist, despite the suspect's acknowledgment that the victim did not want to have sex.
"I'm telling you that's what circumstances suggest to people, including myself, who have looked at it. Although you never said the word 'yes,' the appearance is of consent." Buck said.
Now Buck, in a lawyerly fashion, is saying that he meant a jury might think she had "buyer's remorse" not about the sex but instead about the prior relationship with the suspect.
Buck told the Greeley Tribune Tuesday:
"She said she was passed out during the sexual act, so I wasn't referring to whether she had buyer's remorse for the act that they engaged in, but rather for the prior relationship they had."
But this explanation is not consistent with what Buck told the victim in their private meeting, that Buck thought the circumstances made it appear that she wanted to have sex and, presumably, had buyer's remorse.
It's now up to Buck to explain what he really meant when he said a jury could think the mostly unconscious victim, who told the suspect no, had "buyer's remorse."
Was Buck referring to having buyer's remorse about the sex act?
Was he referring to the prior relationship?
And regardless, does he think it was an appropriate comment for a prosecutor to make publicly? If so, why? If not, will he apologize?