Senator Bernie Sanders’ 2020 presidential campaign has been hit with an unfair labor practice complaint, the National Labor Relations Board made public late Monday night. The complaint was filed on July 19 by an individual in Indiana who claims that the Sanders campaign took part in illegal employee interrogation and retaliation against staffers.
According to Bloomberg Law, “A copy of the charge has not yet been made public, but the agency’s July 22 docket lists five potential violations of the National Labor Relations Act.” Here are the five allegations per the National Labor Relations Board website:
- 8(a)(1) Concerted Activities (Retaliation, Discharge, Discipline)
- 8(a)(3) Discharge (Including Layoff and Refusal to Hire (not salting))
- 8(a)(3) Discipline
- 8(a)(5) Repudiation/Modification of Contract [Sec 8(d)/Unilateral Changes]
- 8(a)(1) Interrogation (including Polling)
The complaint is just more embarrassing news for the self-identified democratic socialist. Over the weekend, as reported by The Daily Wire, Sanders had to cut staffers’ hours to accommodate his routinely-advocated $15 minimum wage.
He also scolded some on his campaign for going to the press to discuss the internal negotiations.
“It does bother me that people are going outside of the process and going to the media,” said Sanders, according to The Des Moines Register. “That is really not acceptable. It is really not what labor negotiations are about, and it’s improper.”
Sanders additionally blasted leaks to the media before his Iowa trip: “We are disappointed that some individuals have decided to damage the integrity of these efforts. We are involved in negotiations. And some are individuals that have decided to damage the integrity of that process before they were concluded,” he said.
The Daily Wire’s Michael Knowles ripped into Sanders’ glaring “hypocrisy” over the debacle during his Monday podcast:
The trouble is the hypocrisy. The trouble is Bernie is running on a $15 minimum wage, and he won't extend that courtesy to his own employees. So last Thursday night his staff leaks this story to the press. That they've unionized and they're fighting for the $15 minimum wage. Bernie, the fake union champion, is fighting them on it. He's trying to crush their union. After these leaks to the press, it gets even better because the Bernie campaign responds and says it is disrespectful to the bargaining unit that put so much work into this process that someone would take their concerns and go to the press. Whatever happened to "democracy dies in darkness"?! Whatever happened to transparency?! Get it all out there! Very different when it affects a left-wing campaign.
As noted by Bloomberg Law, it’s unclear if the National Labor Relations Board will find any merit to the complaint, since “any person” is allow to file, per the board’s site. “The charge filing will initiate a preliminary investigation by the labor board’s Indianapolis office to determine if there is merit to the allegations,” the outlet reported. “The board’s lawyers will then decide whether to move the case forward or dismisses it.”