Bernie Sanders faces questions about political future

Leroy Wright
January 13, 2019

Sen. Bernie Sanders apologized to women who were sexually harassed on his 2016 presidential campaign and thanked them 'from the bottom of my heart for speaking out'.

He says rhetoric about "ending sexism and ending all forms of discrimination. can not just be words".

Becker has since denied the allegations.

Sanders has been on the defensive for weeks while he mulls another presidential bid, as several former campaign staffers have made allegations of sexual misconduct and pay disparity.

The unnamed accuser said she never reported the alleged incident because it came on the same day that Mr Sanders' campaign ended after he failed to snatch the Democratic nomination from Hillary Clinton. But accounts of harassment from women who worked on his last campaign threaten to tarnish his image as a progressive and come at a time when female voters are central to the Democratic Party's strategy for defeating President Donald Trump.

In a Tweet early Thursday afternoon, Sanders issued an apology.

Sanders, a potential 2020 contender, conceded in his Thursday statement that the "standards and safeguards" on the campaign were "inadequate". It must be a reality in our daily lives.

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But representatives for the host and the network declined to comment on the exact terms of her exit. The final straw was her defense in October of Halloween costumes that include blackface .

Sanders was forced to respond to accusations reported by Politico that his campaign floor manager had forcibly kissed a 20-year-old campaign worker after making sexual suggestions to her.

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

Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., heads to his office at the Capitol in Washington, Friday, Dec. 21, 2018.

The allegations have cast a shadow on Sanders' potential 2020 run in a likely crowded field of Democratic contenders. They claimed that, when they detailed those concerns to campaign superiors, they were sometimes ignored, and in one case, laughed off. "You can't run for president of the United States unless you acknowledge that every campaign demands a safe work environment for every employee and volunteer", she added. 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.

Kat Brezler, the other co-founder of the People for Bernie Sanders, said in a statement that part of coming together in support of a Sanders 2020 campaign would be to discuss best practices moving forward and to learn from past mistakes on campaigns.

"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".

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