Sanders supporters plan 400 events as charges swirl around ‘16 campaign

Tasos Katopodis  Getty Images North America

Tasos Katopodis Getty Images North America

Bernie Sanders, who is mulling a presidential bid in 2020, apologized to the women who say they were harassed while working on his 2016 campaign.

In recent weeks, many former 2016 campaign staffers have made allegations of sexual misconduct and pay disparity on the campaign.

Sanders said that his 2018 Senate reelection campaign in Vermont had operated under "some of the strongest sexual harassment policies in the country" and that he had not been aware of the $30,000 settlement.

As 77-year-old Sanders explores another presidential bid, several reports came out last week about several women supporters of Sanders who suffered in a hyper-masculine atmosphere during the 2016 campaign.

In his apology Thursday, Sanders admitted the campaign's "standards and safeguards were inadequate". However, to the women who were allegedly harassed, he said that "what they experienced was absolutely unacceptable and certainly not what a progressive campaign, or any campaign, should be about".

"I'm not going to sit here and tell you we did everything right in terms of human resources", said Sanders.

"Candidates who allow people like Robert Becker to lead their organizations shouldn't earn the highest office in our government", said the woman.

"I was little bit busy running around the country trying to make the case", Sanders told CNN on January 2.

Senator Bernie Sanders has apologised to female staff members on his 2016 United States presidential campaign who allege they were mistreated by male aides.

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Becker has vehemently denied any wrongdoing.

According to the woman and other sources, Sanders's national field director told the woman that he had always wanted to have sex with her and made a reference to riding his "pole", Politico reported.

According to POLITICO, Mr. Becker "oversaw Sanders' Iowa campaign, then helped lead his efforts in Michigan, California and NY as deputy national field director" and has reportedly started calling former staffers to prep for Sanders' potential 2020 run over the past few months.

"It just really sucks because no one ever held [Becker] accountable and he kept pushing and pushing and seeing how much he could get away with".

According to Wednesday reports, Jeff Weaver will not lead the potential campaign despite being a longtime member of Sanders' inner circle and managing his 2016 campaign for president.

"This can't happen in 2020", the woman said in Politico. They claimed that, when they detailed those concerns to campaign superiors, they were sometimes ignored, and in one case, laughed off.

Asked about the accusation, Friends of Bernie Sanders, the senator's main campaign committee, told Politico that "Robert Becker would not be part of any future campaigns".

Allegations of sexual misconduct and an "untenable and unsafe dynamic that developed during [the Sanders] campaign" have dogged the Vermont senator in recent weeks, according to Politico.

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