Sanders’ campaign confirms another early-voting state staff shake-up

Sen. Bernie Sanders’ campaign on Wednesday confirmed another staff shake-up in an early voting state.

The campaign let go of its political director in Iowa, Jess Mazour, earlier this summer, said Misty Rebik, Sanders’ state director. Rebik will remain in her position.

“We’ll continue to make moves that we feel best position this campaign to win,” campaign manager Faiz Shakir said on Wednesday night. The Washington Post first reported on the move.

Word of Mazour’s departure follows the reassignment earlier this week of former New Hampshire state director Joe Caiazzo, who was replaced there with Shannon Jackson, a close Sanders aide who managed his 2018 Senate race. Caiazzo is taking over operations in Massachusetts, which votes next March on Super Tuesday, a month after the Iowa caucuses.

The staff shuffling comes as the Sanders campaign jockeys for position with Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, whose rise in the polls over the past few months has put her about even with the Vermont independent as they work to chase down former Vice President Joe Biden.

Despite the changes, the Sanders campaign has been publicly bullish about its operations in Iowa and New Hampshire, where the senator scored his first victory in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary.

“We’ve got New Hampshire in a very strong place. There’s still work to do to win the state, for damn sure, but we have it in a place that we feel very good about,” Shakir told CNN earlier this week.

Shakir also played up the importance of Massachusetts and, though he didn’t mention her by name, conceded that Warren’s presence in the race meant they expected an especially tight contest in the Bay State.

“Massachusetts is a challenge because there is another presidential candidate running who is from Massachusetts,” Shakir said. “So it takes a particular savvy to win that state. And I feel very strongly that Joe (Caiazzo) is that person.”