Politics

Sanders Ignores Fox News Questions About FBI Investigation, Starts Talking About Health Care

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) on Monday dodged questions from a Fox News producer regarding the FBI investigation into his wife, Jane, opting to talk about health care instead.

"Where are you from?" Sanders asked as he walked.

"Fox News," Rowland said. "CBS is reporting on this. Politico is reporting on this. Do you still believe it's politically motivated, sir?"

Sanders ignored Rowland's question and instead started talking about health care, a hot topic on Capitol Hill with the release of the Senate Republican bill meant to replace Obamacare.

"Well I'm glad that you're interested in the fact that the Republican leadership is proposing legislation which would throw millions of people off of health insurance," Sanders told Rowland.

Fox News correspondent James Rosen reported on the FBI investigation into Sanders' wife, who served as president of Burlington College from 2004 to 2011.

"The case centers on Jane Sander's tenure as president of Vermont's Burlington College from 2004 to 2011 and the loan application she filed in 2010 to help the school expand," Rosen reported. "Published reports allege Sanders claimed $2.6 million in pledges, but as the college spiraled into bankruptcy, Sanders reportedly raised less than $700,000."

Rosen said Sanders' former campaign manager, Jeff Weaver, did not return Fox's request for comment, but that he told Politico the couple has hired attorneys Rich Cassidy and Larry Robbins.

"Senator Sanders' Senate staff did not respond to multiple requests for comment either. Asked about this case by a local Vermont reporter last month, the senator called it ‘nonsense,'" Rosen said.

This is not the first time that Burlington College has been investigated. The Justice Department was investigating the now-defunct college earlier this year, the Washington Free Beacon reported:

In January 2016, after reporting by VTDigger showing former Burlington College President Jane Sanders overstated pledged donations in applying for a loan so the school could purchase its former North Avenue campus, Republican lawyer Brady Toensing made a formal request to the U.S. attorney for a fraud investigation.

The Vermont Agency of Education took possession of records left at the college in the wake of its sudden closure in May. When a college closes, state law requires the school or the state to keep academic records so students can obtain transcripts and graduate certificates.

Burlington College opted to let the state handle that process. Agency officials said they found the school’s records in disarray, in part because of an unsolved burglary. The state, as a result, took possession of nonacademic records as well as the student records it was required to take.