UPDATED 7:20 AM PT — Thursday, January 10, 2019
A top aide for Bernie Sanders is being accused of sexual misconduct during his time in the Vermont senator’s 2016 presidential campaign.
50-year-old former convention floor leader Robert Becker has been accused of telling a 20-year-old subordinate he wanted to have sex with her and forcibly kissing her during the final night of the Democratic National Convention. The victim did not formally report the incident at the time, but said she’s now coming forward to ensure this doesn’t happen again in 2020.
This comes just a week after Sanders acknowledged his campaign failed to handle allegations properly.
“I’m not going to sit here and tell you we did everything right in terms of human resources,” said Sanders. “In terms of addressing the needs that I’m hearing from them now, that women felt disrespected, that there was sexual harassment, which was not dealt with as effectively as possible.”
Becker has since denied the allegations. Meanwhile, Sanders’ campaign committee has confirmed he will not be a part of any potential future campaigns.
In another blow to the progressive lawmaker, Sanders will not have his trusted campaign manager by his side if he decides to run for president again.
According to Wednesday reports, Jeff Weaver will not lead the potential campaign despite being a longtime member of Sanders’ inner circle and managing his 2016 campaign for president.
Weaver is reportedly leaving because Sanders needs his staff to be more diverse after facing accusations of not understanding racial issues. However, he’s expected to stay on as a senior adviser.