Donald Trump’s campaign manager has clashed with staffers and was accused of manhandling a woman reporter — but his reputation as a bully has followed him for years.
Corey Lewandowski faced a possible coup from disgruntled Trump advisors until a recent string of primary victories, but now the GOP candidate is facing pressure to dump his campaign manager over the incident with a reporter from the conservative Breitbart website, reported Politico.
However, an investigation by Politico revealed the “intense, Red Bull-chugging operative has been accused of bullying and other inappropriate behavior” earlier in the 2016 campaign and during a previous job with the Koch brothers-backed Americans for Prosperity group.
More than 20 sources said Lewandowski had physically intimidated other reporters and made sexually suggestive remarks to women journalists.
The 42-year-old Lewandowski boasted about threatening to “blow up” the car of AFP’s chief financial officer over a late expense reimbursement check in 2012, according to multiple sources, reported Politico.
Sources also said Lewandowski loudly — and profanely — berated a woman who worked for him at an AFP board meeting.
Lewandowski was angry at the woman for challenging his authority, and witnesses said he got into her personal space and called her a “c*nt” in front of other AFP employees and senior officials.
He was soon shifted to a newly created role at AFP running a voter registration drive, Politico reported.
Lewandowski left AFP in 2014, after his organization sent incorrect voter registration forms to North Carolina voters.
He met Trump at an AFP event that year in New Hampshire, as the real estate tycoon and reality TV star was exploring a presidential run.
Trump offered him $20,000 a month and temporary headquarters at an apartment he owned on New York City’s Upper East Side, and Lewandowski began building a campaign team.
Some of those staffers have complained about his profane outbursts and his controlling of access to Trump, and they considering ousting him before the GOP candidate won primaries in South Carolina and Nevada, reported Politico.
Sources told the website Lewandowski screamed profanities at organizers of Conservative Political Action Conference after they demanded Trump field questions from a journalist, just as other presidential candidates did.
Reporters say Lewandowski, a former police officer, acts more like a security guard to Trump than a political operative, sometimes using his body to push them away.
Other reporters say he has used “completely inappropriate” and suggestive language to women covering Trump’s campaign.
Lewandowski denied the claims, and he denies putting his hands on the Breitbart reporter — who he described as “an attention seeker.”