In a preview clip from an interview with Cosby airing Tuesday morning, his first since dozens and dozens of women came forward to share their harrowing stories of purported rape, drugging, and abuse at the hands of the comedy icon, he echoed the argument put forth by his daughter, Ensa, during a radio interview Monday in which she claimed: “Racism has played a big role [in the allegations]. The accusations against my father have been one-sided from the beginning. I’ve witnessed my father’s reputation and legendary works be dismissed without any proof.”
“Could be. Could be,” Cosby told Sirius XM’s Michael Smerconish about Ensa’s “racism” theory.
“There are so many tentacles,” he added. “So many different—‘nefarious’ is a great word, And I just truly believe that some of it may very well be that.”
Cosby also pushed back against the timing of the sexual-assault allegations, arguing that they were made to influence public opinion against him.
“So, the piling on, so to speak is a way—and certainly an impressive, impressive way—to get public opinion to come to the other side,” Cosby told Smerconish.
The 79-year-old stands trial next month in Pennsylvania on three counts of felony aggravated indecent sexual assault. He is alleged to have sexually assaulted Andrea Constand, then the 31-year-old basketball director at Temple University—Cosby’s alma mater—in 2004.
In 2015, court documents from the Constand case revealed that in 2005, Cosby gave a sworn deposition wherein he confessed to acquiring at least seven prescriptions of Quaaludes with the intent of giving them to women he wanted to have sex with. He refused to answer if he’d ever given any women the sedatives without their knowledge.
It is not the first time Cosby has played the race card. In a motion filed last year, his lawyers claimed he would not get a fair trial because of his race.
“The Commonwealth chose 13 women to testify against Mr. Cosby. Only one of those women self-identifies as African-American,” Cosby’s legal team stated in the motion, referring to the prosecution’s list of witnesses in the Constand case. “The Commonwealth’s choice preys upon subconscious (or perhaps conscious) beliefs that a white woman is less likely to consent to sex with a black man, particularly in the 1960s and 1970s—the time period the Commonwealth chose to focus on.”
They added: “we cannot ignore the unfortunate role that racial bias still plays in our criminal justice system…racial and ethnic disparities [still] exist in both the American juvenile and adult criminal justice systems’ in general, and in Pennsylvania in particular.”
As many as 58 women have accused the fallen comedy legend of sexual misconduct in incidents that allegedly occurred from 1965-2008. While most of Cosby’s accusers are white, many of them are black—including Beverly Johnson, a well-known fashion model, actress, and entrepreneur.
Cosby’s interview with Smerconish airs Tuesday at 10 a.m. on Sirius XM’s channel 124.