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11 January 2019, 05:08 | Devin Moran
Sanders Apologizes for Harassment Among 2016 Campaign Staff
Sanders says he was unaware of Becker's alleged behaviour.
Other former staffers spoke about experiences of sexual misconduct on the campaign trail to the the New York Times, which published a story earlier this month.
The New York Times on January 2 published accounts from women who worked for the campaign complained of sexual harassment and pay disparities.
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.
The woman did not formally report the incident at the time, but was prompted to speak out after Becker, who is reportedly not on Sanders' payroll, "has been calling potential staffers and traveling to early primary states to prepare for another presidential run - activities that Sanders' top aides did not endorse, but did not disavow, either".
"Candidates who allow people like Robert Becker to lead their organizations shouldn't earn the highest office in our government", she told Politico. This can't happen in 2020.
CNN reported on Wednesday that Jeff Weaver, the longtime Sanders confidant and 2016 campaign manager, will not return to the role he held in 2016 should Sanders chose to run again, and Friends of Bernie Sanders confirmed this to VTDigger. Becker, however, said he was just tasked with reviewing "potentially questionable or damaging social media posts of potential hires". But Jeff Weaver, who ran Sanders' 2016 campaign, stressed then that Becker was not doing so in an official capacity as he "doesn't work for the campaign because there is no campaign". They claimed that, when they detailed those concerns to campaign superiors, they were sometimes ignored, and in one case, laughed off. Additionally, numerous women have complained they were paid less than men and forced into inappropriate and uncomfortable situations, according to The New York Times.
Mr Sanders' Twitter apology comes after he said sorry on CNN last week "to any woman who felt that she was not treated appropriately".
Sanders' principal campaign committee, Friends of Bernie Sanders, called Becker's alleged conduct "deplorable and fundamentally unacceptable" and announced that Becker "would not be a part of any future campaigns".
Thursday, he said the country needs a "cultural revolution" in order to "change workplace attitudes and behavior".
"I was little bit busy running around the country trying to make the case", Sanders told CNN on January 2.
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