2020 Democratic presidential primary hopeful Andrew Yang opened up on Sunday about the sexual abuse his wife, Evelyn, dealt with at the hands of her doctor – saying during an interview on “Fox News Sunday” that when he learned of the assault he felt like he’d “failed her.”
“It was extraordinarily painful, the fact is I was away many of the times she’d had these appointments. I felt like I’d failed her and it’s heartbreaking that this happened to Evelyn, it’s heartbreaking that it happened to anyone,” he said.
Yang added: "Evelyn’s story is not unique to her; we’ve had this outpouring of support and gratitude from many women who have been in similar situations.”
Evelyn Yang revealed earlier this month in an interview on CNN that she was assaulted by Dr. Robert Hadden of Columbia University while pregnant with her first child.
"I feel like I put up with some inappropriate behavior that I didn't know at the time was straight-up sexual abuse slash sexual assault until much later," she said.
Yang, a businessman who has mounted a dark horse campaign for the Democratic nomination, said that learning of his wife’s abuse has made him realize that there needs to be more accountability regarding these actions.
“What we have to do as a country is acknowledge these situations happen more often than we’d like to believe and that institutions instead of protecting the doctor in this case should be doing what they can to protect ourselves, our wives, our daughters, our mothers. We can do better than this as a country,” he said.
The Yang campaign also announced on Sunday that he had qualified from next month’s Democratic debate at St. Anselm College in Manchester, N.H. Yang did not qualify for the January debate, but became the seventh Democrat to qualify for the February debate after polling above 5 percent in UNH/CNN's New Hampshire survey.