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Report: Bernie cut campaign staff hours after they demanded $15/hour minimum wage

Report: Bernie cut campaign staff hours after they demanded $15/hour minimum wage

Sanders: “It does bother me that people are going outside of the process and going to the media”

An ironic thing is happening in the Bernie Sanders campaign. While Bernie travels the country demanding a $15 dollar an hour minimum wage, his staffers are demanding the same from him. Luckily, Bernie has found a solution to the problem.

He cut their hours.

Rachel Frazin of The Hill provides some background:

Sanders campaign staff fighting for $15 minimum wage he pushed nationally: report

Workers for Sen. Bernie Sanders’s (I-Vt.) 2020 presidential campaign are reportedly pushing for higher wages as the candidate urges support for a nationwide $15 an hour minimum wage.

Campaign field employees are asking for salaries they say would be equal to the $15-an-hour wage Sanders has championed, The Washington Post reported Thursday, citing internal documents.

The documents reviewed by the newspaper reportedly show that the unresolved dispute between the unionized workers and management has been going on since at least May.

A draft letter members of the union planned to send to campaign manager Faiz Shakir said that field organizers “cannot be expected to build the largest grassroots organizing program in American history while making poverty wages,” according to the Post. “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.”

Organizers worked at least 60 hours per week, resulting in pay of less than $13 per hour, the letter reportedly estimated.

Bernie had to find a way to deal with this, so like many business owners, he chose to cut employee hours:

From Brianne Pfannenstiel at the Des Moines Register:

Sanders said field organizers, who are the lowest-ranking members of a presidential campaign and are typically in their 20s, make $36,000 a year with 100% employer-paid health care, as well as paid vacation and sick leave.

For a staffer working 40 hours a week, that comes out to about $17 an hour. But 40-hour workweeks on presidential campaigns are rare. 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.

Twitchy notes this passage from the report which seems to indicate Bernie was not pleased with the way this was handled:

“It does bother me that people are going outside of the process and going to the media,” he said. “That is really not acceptable. It is really not what labor negotiations are about, and it’s improper.”

Maybe Bernie could sell one of his many homes to help pay these workers.

Just a thought.


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Wait. Bernie doesn’t want to re-distribute his wealth to those who have far, far less? Why a person could think Bernie is a faux Socialist or something.

Bernie is acting like a Capitalist!

All Demoncrats are closet capitalist. They just love using everyone else’s money.

All Demoncrats are closet capitalist. They just love using everyone else’s money.

An article in the NY Post says … “Field organizers, often 20-something-year-olds who uproot their lives and spend long days on the front lines of the campaign, are paid a set annual salary of $36,000, while interns and canvassers make $15 an hour and bargaining unit deputies rake in $100,000 a year, according to the collective bargaining agreement.”

So an union contract set up a class of employees to be “salaried” employees. I wonder if the state labor departments would consider such positions to be exempt from the overtime rules?

The large aerospace company I retried from had multiple payroll classifications, factory labor, general administrative, professional engineering, professional administrative, management … each payroll classification was designated either exempt or non-exempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) … if exempt, such as the PA and Management payroll, you were considered a ‘company man’ and earned an annual salary regardless of the hours worked. If I showed up to work and there was nothing that required my presence, I could call it a day and go fishing. If however we were preparing a launch, I could be expected to put in 24 hours a day – and did on many such occasions.

Basically, Bernie limited them to 8 hours a day, 6 days a week with a paid 30 minute lunch. Such is approximately equal to $15/hr.

I suspect a lot of this “living wage” bunk might go away, if employers and employees had a better understanding of exempt and non-exempt employment.

Funny, all these “socialists” act just like Republicans when it comes to their own money.

Okay. Let’s do some math in our heads. If people are working 60 hour weeks and they now cannot work more than 43, it seems like you need to hire about 50% more workforce to fill the same number of hours.
Bernie – You’re already paying 100% of the health insurance of the existing workforce. When you expand your workforce by 50%, all of those new employees will need health insurance on top of the $15/hr.
WHY NOT JUST PAY THE EXISTING FOLKS 50% MORE?!! And save the insurance costs, additional payroll tax costs and all the hiring and carrying costs of the significantly expanded workforce.
The answer is that the Union gets 50% more employees on their dole paying union dues.
Bernie got suckered.

southern commenter | July 20, 2019 at 4:09 pm

Typical communist

My neighbor was a Shop Steward for the UAW in Detroit. When he asked me to do so electrical work for him, I asked if he was going to pay Union scale. He just laughed. I think he paid me $20 for two days work. My bad…

How ungrateful of Bernie’s workers. It is a privilege to “volunteer” for the cause of socialist progress. In the Soviet Union one would praise leadership for their decision, not grouse about money. Che gave his life for the cause, couldn’t they forego a latte or two for it?

Bunch of capitalist roaders in the making.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to alaskabob. | July 21, 2019 at 9:54 am

    Quite often working long hours on a campaign is about being appointed to a well paid cushy job if the candidate wins.

The issue is cost-of-living. The issue is progressive prices.

Damage is already done. Everyone has said that hours will be reduced when the minimum wage is raised to $15. Bernie just showed it in action. Plus he resents how they went to the media. That is how progressives work. Man up Bern, and stop whining.