Sanders apologises after new harassment allegation surfaces

Sanders apologises after new harassment allegation surfaces

Sanders apologises after new harassment allegation surfaces

Sen. Bernie Sanders on Thursday apologized to women who have shared experiences of harassment by male supervisors while working on his 2016 US presidential campaign.

"To women in our campaign who were harassed or mistreated, I apologise", the Vermont independent wrote in a statement on Twitter on Thursday. "What they experienced was absolutely unacceptable and certainly not what a progressive campaign, or any campaign, should be about..."

'The allegations that I have heard, that you have heard, speak to unacceptable behavior, that must not be tolerated in any campaign or in any workplace in our country, ' he noted.

"To the women in that campaign who were harassed or mistreated I apologize". Our standards, our procedures, our safeguards were clearly inadequate, ' he added.

Politico reported Thursday morning that Sanders' national field director, Robert Becker, had allegedly sexually harassed and assaulted another female staffer on the night of the Democratic National Convention in 2016.

"I categorically deny these allegations of improper and unprofessional conduct", said Becker in a statement.

Dozens of women and men who worked on the 2016 campaign signed a letter asking to meet with Sanders and his top aides "to discuss the issue of sexual violence and harassment on the 2016 campaign, for the objective of planning to mitigate the issue in the upcoming presidential cycle". The campaign staffers had gathered at the restaurant to mark the end of Sanders's presidential bid.

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Sanders's comments on Thursday were more direct and conciliatory that his initial responses to reports of the allegations.

Becker, now 50, told the woman he'd always wanted to have sex with her, she and three other witnesses told Politico.

The woman did not report the incident at the time since the campaign was finished but has come forward now as Becker has been involved with potential 2020 groundwork. They claimed that, when they detailed those concerns to campaign superiors, they were sometimes ignored, and in one case, laughed off.

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.

Mr Sanders' Twitter apology comes after he said sorry on CNN last week "to any woman who felt that she was not treated appropriately".

"Candidates who allow people like Robert Becker to lead their organizations shouldn't earn the highest office in our government", said the staffer, who asked to remain anonymous out of fear of retaliation by Sanders and Becker loyalists.

The campaign of the 2016 presidential election in the U.S. was marred by episodes of sexual misconduct, especially by the then Republican candidate Donald Trump who eventually won the poll to become the president.

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