The New York Times on January 2 published accounts from women who worked for the campaign complained of sexual harassment and pay disparities. Other organizations, like the Illinois Anti-Harassment, Equality and Access Panel and the Campaign Workers Guild labor union, have centered their work around sexual misconduct in campaigns.
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and Democratic candidate for president in 2016 apologized to women working on his 2016 presidential campaign, shortly after a report that a female staffer said one of his top advisers forcibly tried to kiss her the night of the Democratic National Convention.
"Sanders already faces tough primary competition from several women, including Warren, Harris, Gillibrand, and maybe even Tulsi Gabbard who was a key supporter in 2016", he said.
On Thursday afternoon, Sanders released a statement on Twitter, admitting that "there were some women who were harassed or mistreated".
The campaign was celebrating the end of Sanders' improbable run for the nomination when Becker told the woman he wanted to have sex with her and made the reference to his "pole", the newspaper said.
Robert Becker, who was the Iowa state director for Sen. "To the women in that campaign who were harassed or mistreated I apologize". He said that rhetoric about "ending sexism and ending all forms of discrimination. can not just be words". It must be a reality in our daily lives.
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. The New York Times reported last week that a Latino outreach strategist for the campaign complained to a supervisor that she had been harassed by a campaign surrogate.
"Robert Becker would not be a part of any future campaigns", the statement said, "No one who committed sexual harassment in 2016 would be back if there were a 2020 campaign".
Other former aides accused Becker of using social media to determine potential female hires' attractiveness, according to Politico. Per the outlet, top Sanders "aides did not endorse, but did not disavow, either".
Amid speculation that Sanders could seek the White House again, the progressive senator has faced fallout as broader sexual harassment complaints stemming from the 2016 bid have come to light in recent weeks.
This spotlight on the 2016 campaign has not left Sanders' inner circle unscathed. Investigators cleared her of wrongdoing, Weaver announced in November.
The woman, who requested anonymity to avoid possible retribution, did not report the incident at the time because Sanders' campaign had ended.
Weaver could not reached for comment.
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"First things first, we're coming together on January 12 to talk about what worked and what didn't work in 2016 so we can build the strongest campaign for 2020 to support our movement", Brezler said.