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Sanders campaign touts another endorsement that didn't happen

Story highlights

  • The Sanders campaign is touting the support of a Nevada activist who says she's actually backing Hillary Clinton
  • This is not the first time that the Vermont independent's campaign has incorrectly said someone endorsed them

(CNN)Once again, the Bernie Sanders' campaign finds itself having claimed the support of someone who didn't exactly endorse the Vermont senator.

Brenda Romero, a Nevada student leader and DREAMer that Bernie Sanders' campaign touted as someone who endorsed their campaign, tells CNN she never endorsed the Vermont senator and is backing Hillary Clinton.
    Romero said Monday she had agreed to be part of Sanders' Nevada Latino Steering Committee, but that she never endorsed the senator.
    Sanders released the list of activists and elected officials on his Latino committee in January.
    "Tomorrow, a group of highly respected community leaders will announce their support for Bernie Sanders for president," said a statement about the press conference.
    The list included Lucy Flores, former Nevada state assemblywoman and congressional candidate, and Romero, a undocumented DREAMer and class president at College of Southern Nevada.
    "I didn't agree to such an endorsement," Romero said Monday, noting that while she agreed to be part of the steering committee, she was told that the role would be advising the "campaign and potentially Sen. Sanders about immigration issues."
    Romero is the latest in a string of endorsements touted by Sanders who didn't actually back the Vermont senator.
    Two newspapers in New Hampshire that had not backed the senator were included in an ad titled "Endorsed" and last month in Iowa, an ad by the Sanders campaign included the Des Moines Register in a list of newspapers that have backed the senator.
    The Register actually endorsed Clinton.
    What's more, the AARP and the League of Conservation Voters have said the Sanders campaign has used their logos in mailers without their permission.
    In an emails provided by the Sanders campaign, Romero did agree to be part of the steering committee, telling a Sanders staffer that she would be "honored to be part of this."
    The email asking for Romero's support came from Erika Andiola, Sanders' Latino outreach strategist. In the email, Aniola told Romero she would "be serving the campaign in an advisory capacity and offering feedback on how we can best connect with and mobilize support in the Latino community for the remaining life of the campaign."
    Nowhere in the email exchange, though, does Romero agree to endorse Sanders. In fact, Romero asked not to have her title included in any campaign lists because as student body president, she has "to stay neutral to candidates."
    But because Romero has grown frustrated with the Sanders campaign, she said Monday that she is backing Clinton.
    "I believe that Hillary has my back, and that she is the only candidate capable of accomplishing things in the face of Republican obstruction," Clinton said. "She will get things done for immigrants families."
    Aside from providing the emails with Romero, the Sanders campaign did not comment for this story.
    Clinton, too, has dealt with touting endorsements that haven't actually happened. Two mayors -- one from Wilmington, Delaware, and another from San Antonio -- were among a list of 50 mayors that endorsed Clinton in October. But shortly after the list was released to the public, both mayors said they had yet to officially endorse the former secretary of state.
    Sanders, who is currently leading in New Hampshire, is fighting to pick up ground on Clinton in Nevada, a state that most observers feel is more demographically suitable for her. While there has been a dearth of polling in the state, Clinton held a sizable lead, according to polls released late last year.
    Clinton has picked up a number of top endorsements in the Silver State, including one earlier this month from Astrid Silva, possibly the nation's more recognizable DREAMer, an undocumented immigrant brought into the country as a child.
    Sanders' campaign dismissed the Silva endorsement when the senator's press secretary for Latino outreach tweeted that Silva was a "press hit" for Clinton.
    Romero said Monday that the response to Silva factored into her decision to back Clinton.
    "I'm also disappointed by the attacks from senior staffers on the Sanders campaign on Astrid Silva," she said. "It shows how disconnected they are from Nevada, and they should apologize to her. There is no room for hate between DREAMers in this campaign."