Bernie Sanders apologizes to 2016 campaign aides who complained of sexual harassment

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Bernie Sanders, who is mulling a presidential bid in 2020, apologized to the women who say they were harassed while working on his 2016 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".

He continued, "To the women in that campaign who were harassed or mistreated I apologize".

The staffer, Robert Becker, who helped lead Sanders's campaign in Michigan, New York, California and Iowa as a deputy national field director, has been accused of grabbing a female campaign staffer by her wrists and grabbing her head while kissing and putting his tongue in her mouth, Politico reported Wednesday.

Becker denied the allegations to Politico. 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.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) hasn't said whether he will run for president in 2020, but if he does, his campaign manager from 2016 won't spearhead the operation, according to CNN.

Sanders has not personally been the focus of any of the accusations. Sanders had issued an apology and said he wasn't aware of the incidents at the time.

He projected more contrition on Thursday, saying that "our standards, our procedures, our safeguards, were clearly inadequate".

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"I was a little bit busy running around the country trying to make the case", he said.

He thanked the women who did come forward with complaints of sexual misconduct and ensured that his 2018 Senate re-election campaign had "established some of the strongest sexual harassment policies in the country".

"Bernie Sanders is facing backlash after new allegations of sexual harassment against one of his former top campaign aides", Todd explained.

Over two dozen Sanders alumni signed the letter, in which they noted a culture of what they called toxic masculinity was common throughout the campaign world, Politico reported.

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

"Last month, Sen. Sanders said grassroots support would determine whether or not he decides to run for president again", Winnie Wong, co-founder of the People for Bernie, said in a statement, "We are here, and we are ready to support him all the way to finish line".

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

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