(CNN) - Michele Bachmann’s national spokesman downplayed claims Monday that the Minnesota congresswoman’s New Hampshire staff had been mistreated by the campaign’s senior-level team.
“That's unfortunate. They want to call names, that's their prerogative. We wish them the best,” Alice Stewart said on CNN’s “John King U.S.A.”
Earlier Monday, five of Bachmann’s New Hampshire staffers released a statement accusing the campaign’s national operation of being "rude, unprofessional, dishonest, and at times cruel."
All five of the New Hampshire workers who released the statement have resigned from Bachmann’s campaign.
Stewart characterized the incident as a minor hurdle in what will end up being a long campaign.
“It is disheartening when members of the staff or volunteers or people who are working with the team decide to communicate with the media as opposed with the campaign,” Stewart said. “We haven't heard anything from these people. It is unfortunate they chose to make it in such a public way.”
The statement released by the New Hampshire staff said the campaign was in “chaos,” and that operatives on the ground in the Granite State were isolated from key campaign moments.
"Sadly, they were deceived, constantly left out of the loop regarding key decisions, and relegated to second-class citizens within a campaign in which they were the original members," the statement said.
Stewart said that while the New Hampshire operation was important, winning Iowa was the primary focus for Bachmann and her campaign.
“First and foremost, we have to get through the important first caucus state,” Stewart said. “That's what she's focused on.”
After a brief peak in national polls following a win at the Iowa Straw Poll, Bachmann has seen her support sliding. The most recent CNN/ORC International poll, taken October 14-16, showed 6% of GOP voters backing Bachmann.
–CNN's Rachel Streitfeld contributed to this report.