The woman who claims to have witnessed a bizarre prank by Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul while the candidate was in college has reiterated that she was not ‘kidnapped’ in a legal sense by Paul and forced to do drugs. As the Washington Post points out, this essentially corroborates both Paul’s claims (about kidnapping, not the “Aqua Buddha”) and the GQ story, which did not call the incident kidnapping.

From the Post:

The woman — who was made available to me for an interview by GQ reporter Jason Zengerle in response to the Paul campaign’s denunciations of his article — said she didn’t mean to imply that she was kidnapped “in a legal sense.”

“The whole thing has been blown out of proportion,” she told me. “They didn’t force me, they didn’t make me. They were creating this drama: `We’re messing with you.'”

The woman said that much of the subsequent coverage of her allegations missed a key nuance: As a participant in a college ritual, where lines between acquiescence and victimization are often blurry, she was largely playing along with the notion that she was being forced to follow Paul’s orders.

“I went along because they were my friends,” she said. “There was an implicit degree of cooperation in the whole thing. I felt like I was being hazed.”

That characterization of events supports Paul’s claim that, as he told Fox News yesterday, “No, I never was involved with kidnapping. No, I never was involved with forcibly drugging people.”

But in her conversation with me, the woman stood by the general outline of her earlier account.

“[They] came over to my house as friends that I knew,” she told me. “They immediately said, `We’re going to tie you up and go for a ride.'”

She reiterated that they took her to a room filled with pot smoke and told her to partake, but she emphasized that she hadn’t been forced. “He did not drug me,” she said. “He did not force me physically in any way.”

She said they then “took me out to this creek and made me worship Aqua Buddha.” And she added that the whole thing was so “weird” that afterwards she ended relations with Paul and his friends.

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