Anita Hill criticizes Joe Biden & Orrin Hatch at Q-and-A
Published: January 22, 2013 11:36AM
Updated: January 22, 2013 02:28PM
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Anita Hill poses for a portrait during the Sundance Film Festival on Friday, Jan. 18, 2013, in Park City, Utah. Hill made national headlines in 1991 when she testified that then-Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas had sexually harassed her. Now, more than 20 years later, director Freida Mock explores Hill's landmark testimony and the resulting social and political changes in the documentary "Anita," premiering Saturday at the Sundance Film Festival. (Photo by Victorial Will/Invision/AP)

Anita Hill showed up to the second screening of the Sundance documentary "Anita' Monday night at the Salt Lake City Library, and the same brave spirit that she showed during Supreme Court Justice's confirmation hearings two decades ago showed up during the Q-and-A afterwards.

Hill was asked about Vice President Joe Biden, who led the hearings when Hill was called to the Hill to talk about Thomas' alleged sexual harassment. In the film, Biden is shown to at best, overwhelmed by the media firestorm, and at worst, dismissive to Hill's complaints.

"I do criticize his leadership in those hearings," Hill said on the same day Biden was sworn in for his second term as Vice President. "I feel the public wasn't served ... [He showed] an unwillingness to call expert witnesses ,,, I'm hopeful that Joe Biden has grown."

Hill was asked by an audience member how it felt to be a hero. "Tonight, it feels pretty good," she said.

In the film, our very own Sen. Orrin Hatch is depicted as helping shift the discussion from sexual harassment to race when Thomas was called to testify after Hill made her complaints known. In the film, Thomas is accused on playing the race card when he refers to his hearing as a "high-tech lynching." Hill was asked about her feelings about Hatch, and she astutely responded, "You've known Orrin Hatch longer than I have." Although she didn't say it, her vibe seemed to suggest the question, "Why do you guys keep electing him?"

— David Burger

To read Tribune writer Ben Fulton's one-on-one interview with Hill, go to http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/entertainment2/55672432-223/anita-aundance-hill-http.html.csp