Bernie Sanders Loses California Director a Month Before Primary

Michael Ceraso departs campaign following dispute over strategy

Last Updated: May 11, 2016 @ 5:44 PM

Just 27 days before the California primary — a crucial state in Bernie Sanders’ last-ditch effort to capture the Democratic nomination — the Vermont senator has been dealt a blow with the sudden departure of Michael Ceraso, his California state director.

According to Politico, Ceraso “parted ways” with the campaign after he pushed for more investment in field and digital organizing rather than TV ads.

The Sanders campaign did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment.

Ceraso was Sanders’ deputy state director in New Hampshire and was part of the team that helped lead the campaign to big wins in a several states in March. He had been working in California for weeks, laying the groundwork ahead of the state’s June 7 primary.

California has more delegates than any other state in the country and a win in the Golden State is Sanders’ last chance to grab a significant number of delegates before the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in July.

Last month, Sanders announced that he was laying off “hundreds” of campaign workers. The Vermont senator said he was trimming his staff as he focuses his remaining campaign efforts on winning as many delegates as possible.

“It will be hundreds of staff members,” Sanders told the New York Times. “We have had a very large staff, which was designed to deal with 50 states in this country; 40 of the states are now behind us. So we have had a great staff, great people.”

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