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Sanders Apologizes for Harassment Among 2016 Campaign Staff

Sanders Apologizes for Harassment Among 2016 Campaign Staff

Bernie Sanders's 2016 presidential campaign has been accused of sexual misconduct against a female staffer.

"I thank them, from the bottom of my heart, for speaking out", Sanders wrote in a statement.

The Vermont independent said on Capitol Hill that the alleged misconduct by male aides "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.

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.

Becker denied the allegations saying they were "at odds with my recollection of a late evening filled with many hugs and kisses and tears and conversations about what's next". The woman allegedly assaulted by Becker was one of those contacted, prompting her to inform senior Sanders advisers, including 2016 campaign manager Jeff Weaver, what she says happened the night of the convention. Sanders also said he wasn't aware of a reported $30,000 USA settlement to resolve a discrimination claim against his 2016 campaign. 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. Our standards, our procedures, our safeguards were clearly inadequate, ' he added.

The Vermont senator's campaign committee, Friends of Bernie Sanders, said Becker "would not be a part of any future campaigns". "I was a little bit busy running around the country trying to make the case", Sanders said last week during a CNN interview.

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The New York Times on January 2 published accounts from women who worked for the campaign complained of sexual harassment and pay disparities.

Brett Carlsen via Getty Images Onetime presidential hopeful Sen.

Weaver is reportedly leaving because Sanders needs his staff to be more diverse after facing accusations of not understanding racial issues.

"We are addressing what happened on the Bernie campaign but as people that work in this space we see that all campaigns are extremely risky to women and marginalized people and we are attempting to fix that", the campaign staffers wrote.

The allegations have cast a shadow on Sanders' potential 2020 run in a likely crowded field of Democratic contenders.

Several other high-profile former and current lawmakers have been embroiled in sexual harassment allegations against their aides.