In a Tuesday appearance on CNN’s “Erin Burnett OutFront,” Sen. Bernie Sanders defended his wife, Jane Sanders, amid reports of a potential federal investigation related to her time as president of the now-defunct Burlington College.
When asked whether his wife was under investigation by the FBI, Sanders dodged the question.
“My wife is about the most honest person I know,” Sanders said.
CNN reported that Jeff Weaver, Sanders’ former campaign manager, confirmed that Jane Sanders has hired attorney Larry Robbins to represent her in the possible investigation. According to Weaver, the FBI has not contacted Jane or Bernie Sanders regarding such an investigation. A source close to Senator Sanders said he is represented by Rich Cassidy, an attorney that has represented the Sanders family for years.
Jane Sanders was the president of Burlington College from 2004-2011. In 2016, the college announced its closure due to its inability to pay debt assumed in a real estate deal the school made during her tenure.
According to CNN, “Vermont lawyer Brady Toensing, a former state Republican vice chair who was once Trump’s campaign chair in the state, has leveled accusations of bank fraud against the couple and alleged the senator may have pressured a Vermont bank to speed up the loan process.”
In his Tuesday interview, Sanders contended that Toensing instigated the potential investigation for political reasons, claiming it began five years after his wife left her position at the college but during his presidential campaign, “coincidentally, no doubt,” Sanders said.
“I think it’s fairly pathetic that when people are involved in public life, it’s not only that they get attacked, but it’s their wives and their families that get attacked.”
“When she came to that college, it was failing financially and academically,” Sanders said. “When she left it, it was in better shape than it had ever been.”
Sanders declined to answer further questions regarding the alleged probe, and said that he would “let it play out.”
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