Bernie Sanders: People Attacking Las Vegas Union ‘Not Part of Our Movement’

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks to reporters before attending the Senate impeachment trial at the U.S. Capitol, on January 29, 2020 in Washington, DC. Wednesday begins the question-and-answer phase of the impeachment trial that will last up to 16 hours over the next two days. (Photo by …
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) distanced himself from what the Culinary Union claims are attacks from his supporters, condemning “ugly personal attacks” but telling PBS NewsHour on Thursday that those people are “not part of our movement.”

The powerful Las Vegas union released a statement this week, condemning Sanders supporters, who it says “viciously attacked the Culinary Union and working families in Nevada simply because our union has provided facts on what certain healthcare proposals might do to take away the system of care we have built over 8 decades.”

The statement and alleged attacks follow the release of an informational flyer, which noted that Sanders would “End Culinary Healthcare” under his Medicare for All plan:

“We have always stood up for what we believe in and will continue to do so,” the union said in a statement:

While Sanders condemned the attacks, calling harassment “unacceptable to me,” he is distancing himself from the supporters the Culinary Union addressed in its statement.

“Anybody making personal attacks against anybody else in my name is not part of our movement,” Sanders stated. “We don’t want them. And I’m not so sure, to be honest with you, that they are necessarily part of our movement.”

This is not the first time Sanders has had to condemn bad behavior from those who claim to be his supporters. In September, black leaders, including members of the Black Lives Matter movement, wrote a letter calling out what they described as “hateful, violent, and racist threats” from Sanders supporters.

As Breitbart News reported:

Black leaders – including Black Lives Matter leaders, like co-founder Patrisse Cullors – signed a letter, which condemned the “hateful, violent, and racist threats” from people who identify as Sanders supporters. A draft of the letter, obtained by Splinter News, claimed that Sanders supporters have called black leaders “Uncle Tom,” “Slave,” and “Cunt.” The alleged threats followed Sanders’ loss of the WFP endorsement, according to the letter.

The leaders continued, demanding the Sanders campaign “unequivocally denounce the racism in its ranks, and issue a public statement separating themselves from these abhorrent attacks.” They also urged Democrats across the board – both Sanders supporters and Warren supporters – to come together to “defeat one of the most serious threats to peace and justice in our lifetimes.”

“We cannot wait to make justice real amongst the resisters — our lives literally depend on each other,” the leaders added in the letter.

Sanders condemned “racist bullying and harassment of any kind, in any space” in a social media post shortly after:

None of the presidential candidates managed to pocket the Culinary Union’s political endorsement.

“We’re not going to endorse a political candidate,” UNITE Here! Culinary Workers’ Union Local 226’s Secretary-General Geoconda Argüello-Kline said on Thursday.

“We are going to work … to defeat President Trump,” she added.

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