by Frank Holmes, reporter
What would Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-V.T., say if a millionaire who owns three houses campaigned for public office on a promise he’d give workers a huge wage hike — but then paid his own staff “poverty wages”?
If he was honest, Bernie would look in the mirror and say, “That’s me!”
And now he’s facing down a lawsuit that could end his political career for good.
Sanders has backed the $15 an hour minimum wage in Washington, San Francisco Portland, Chicago — everywhere except in his own campaign.
It turns out the Vermont socialist paid his own workers less than what he demands of everybody else. He was recently shamed into paying up, even though his campaign claims they can’t afford it.
Sanders staffers publicly complaining about how stingy he is with his own money humiliated Sanders and left him steaming. He got revenge by cutting their pay!
Sanders’ campaign workers formed a union and have been protesting since at least May about their pay.
It turns out Bernie only pays his own people about $13 an hour. They’re expected to work 60 hours a week for it.
They tried to work things out, but they say Bernie Sanders sandbagged them.
So they released a letter the union rep wrote to Sanders campaign manager, Faiz Shakir.
It said that Bernie “expected to build the largest grassroots organizing program in American history while making poverty wages.”
“Given our campaign’s commitment to fighting for a living wage of at least $15.00 an hour, we believe it is only fair that the campaign would carry through this commitment to its own field team,” he wrote.
That made Bernie look like a major league hypocrite, since he’d demanded every small business and mom-and-pop corner store pay its workers $15 an hour, no matter how much they’re struggling to get by.
Bernie—who made more than $1 million in 2016 and 2017—campaigned to force employers to give people more than he’s giving his own people.
Just last month, he busted into a Walmart shareholders meeting and accused them of paying “starvation wages”—but it turns out he was paying his own workers “poverty wages.”
Sanders stood with fast-food workers to say that “McDonald’s, a company that took in $1.4bn in profit and paid its CEO $22m” can “pay its workers a living wage” of $15 an hour.
Now, Bernie Sanders has Egg McMuffin on his face.
The labor dispute also gave Bernie’s political enemies high-caliber ammunition to use against him.
Rep. Dan Crenshaw, R-Tex., couldn’t tell if Bernie was guilt of “hypocrisy, irony, or poetic justice.”
Bernie knew he had to do something—fast. So he screwed his staffers over for embarrassing him.
He worked out a deal that actually cut their paychecks!
The Des Moines Register reported that, after their benefits were figured in, the average Sanders campaign worker made “about $17 an hour.”
But “Sanders said the campaign will limit the number of hours staffers work to 42 or 43 each week to ensure they’re making the equivalent of $15 an hour.”
Got that? Bernie Sanders cut their hours — and thus their pay — for bad-mouthing him in the media.
Bernie told the paper he’s mad as hell at his workers.
“It does bother me that people are going outside of the process and going to the media—that is really not acceptable,” Sanders told the paper.
Sanders said going to the media during “labor negotiations” is “improper.”
Somebody should have told Sanders that when he joined striking McDonald’s and Verizon workers during the 2016 campaign, and again this campaign when he’s gone to the media about McDonald’s and Amazon Prime.
More hypocrisy, Bernie?
Critics say that all Americans would feel the same pain that Bernie Sanders inflicted on his workers when he took revenge if a $15 minimum wage becomes law.
This month a Congressional Budget Office report noted, a $15 minimum wage would destroy up to 3.7 million jobs and reduce real “family income in 2025 by $9 billion.”
Bernie will probably blame the businesses who fire their workers for doing the same thing he’s doing right now.
But if Crazy Bernie wants to get mad at somebody for stiffing workers, he can look in a mirror.
Frank Holmes is a reporter for The Horn News.