Backer accused the campaign of deceit and claimed that the campaign is violating the law and the group's intellectual property rights.
Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) is alleging Sen. Bernard Sanders‘ presidential campaign has stolen its grassroots door-knocking strategy and branding.
Cliff Maloney, YAL president, said that Mr. Sanders‘ campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination is using his organization’s “Operation Win at the Door” branding to solicit grassroots door-knockers through text message without YAL’s consent.
Dan Backer, YAL’s attorney, sent Mr. Sanders‘ campaign a cease-and-desist letter Thursday saying YAL first used the branding in 2018 on its grassroots campaign that involved knocking on 1.5 million doors. Mr. Backer’s letter said the Sanders campaign’s use of the same name gives a false impression that the libertarian group supports Mr. Sanders, while it opposes him strongly.
“Your bastardization of our clients’ intellectual property and flagrant attempt to redistribute their hard-won goodwill — a product of tremendous labor on the part of our client — is unauthorized and un-American,” Mr. Backer wrote to the Sanders campaign. “You neither asked for nor received authorization from my client to use the name Operation Win at the Door. Your use of the name Operation Win at the Door is inherently confusing for donors and the general public and you are clearly attempting to target the same audience as Young Americans for Liberty by deceptively soliciting and/or communicating with supporters using the name Operation Win at the Door.”