Sen. Bernie Sanders' top 2016 campaign adviser accused of sexual misconduct

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on Thursday apologized to women who allege they were sexually harassed while working on his 2016 presidential campaign.

The Vermont independent says alleged misconduct by male aides "was absolutely unacceptable and certainly not what a progressive campaign or any campaign should be about".

'We can't just talk about ending sexism and discrimination.

On Wednesday, Politico reported that the deputy national field director for Mr Sanders' campaign had forcibly kissed a younger subordinate in 2016.

More than two dozen former staffers recently sent a letter to Sanders and his aides, seeking a meeting regarding the "sexual violence and harassment on the 2016 campaign" ahead of another bid for the presidency.

Becker allegedly approached the woman at a restaurant and hookah bar following the convention and told her "he had always wanted to have sex with her and made a reference to riding his 'pole, ' according to the woman and three other people who witnessed what happened or were told about it shortly afterward by people who did", says the report. "I apologize", Sanders tweeted on Thursday.

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"Our standards, our procedures, our safeguards, were clearly inadequate, " Sanders said.

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

"Boy is that a tough answer to defend, of course", responded Todd, "because if you're running to be the president of the United States, If you can't manage a campaign how do you manage a country?" "I apologize", Sanders said in a Thursday statement. Rather, Weaver told CNN, he'd serve as "a strategic adviser that needs to deal with some of the 30,000-foot issues as opposed to the management of a day-to-day campaign". The campaign staffers had gathered at the restaurant to mark the end of Sanders's presidential bid.

But Becker, who is not on Sanders' payroll, has been calling potential staffers and traveling to early primary states over the past several months in moves seen as preparing for a 2020 campaign. 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. Bernie Sanders continues to take hits over allegations of sexual misconduct during the 2016 campaign, supporters of the Vermont independent are planning almost 400 events across all 50 states Saturday to back another White House run.

"Robert Becker would not be a part of any future campaigns", the group said in a statement.

"To be clear: no one who committed sexual harassment in 2016 would be back if there were a 2020 campaign", said the committee, which also described Becker's alleged actions as "deplorable and fundamentally unacceptable".

  • Sonia Alvarado