Public records show that Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders used campaign money to hire his wife and stepdaughter, the Free Beacon has reported.
The on-line news organization also reported that Sanders’ wife steered money to family and friends during her tenure as president of Burlington College.
Between 2002 and 2004, when Sanders was still a member of the House of Representatives, his wife Jane O’Meara Sanders was paid more than $90,000 for consulting services and assistance in placing ads, the Free Beacon reported, citing Sanders’ wife as its source. About $60,000 of that money paid for ads, while she kept $30,000. Carina Driscoll, Standers’ stepdaughter, received $65,000 between 2000 and 2004, Sanders’ wife said.
Driscoll also benefitted from Sanders’ wife’s tenure as president of Burlington College. Between 2004 and 2011, Burlington College paid more than $500,000 to the Vermont Woodworking School, which is run by Driscoll. That relationship ended when Sanders’ wife left Burlington College.
The college also paid significant sums to Jonathan Leopold, whose father has been described by Sanders as a friend so close that he is virtually “family.” Annual tax filings show the college reported spending about $47,000 on a study abroad program in the Caribbean in the year 2008, and about $68,000 from 2009-2011. The money went to Leopold, who operated a small resort in the Bahamas, and who testified in a deposition that he conducted boat tours and snorkeling trips “on behalf of Burlington College.”
The Sanders campaign has not responded to media requests for comment.