Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) addressed reports of sexism within his 2016 campaign Wednesday night, telling CNN’s Anderson Cooper that he apologizes to the women affected and that he was “a little bit busy running around the country” and not aware of any sexual harassment at the time.
Sanders described the explosive growth of his campaign and the unexpected number of employees who ultimately came onboard.
“I’m not going to sit here and tell you that we did everything right in terms of human resources, in terms of addressing the needs that I’m hearing from now that women felt disrespected, that there was sexual harassment which was not dealt with as effectively as possible,” he said. “What I will tell you is that when I ran for reelection in 2018 in Vermont, we put forward the strongest set of principles in terms of mandatory training, in terms of women, if they felt harassed, having an independent firm that they can go to. And I think that’s kind of the gold standard for what we should be doing.”
“So I certainly apologize to any woman who felt that she was not treated appropriately,” he continued. “And of course, if I run, we will do better next time.”
In a New York Times report published Wednesday, former female Sanders staffers told of experiences ranging from sexual harassment and indifference from higher ups to pay gaps between men and women on the campaign.
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