By now, you might have heard about or read the explosive piece on the Democratic National Committee (DNC) in Politico a few days ago. It was actually an excerpt from Donna Brazile’s new book, Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns That Put Donald Trump in the White House, which details the events surrounding the hacking of the DNC’s emails and the Clinton campaign that supposedly led to a Trump presidency.
Brazile Writes About System Being Rigged Against Sanders
Brazile reveals quite a few astonishing details in the piece, but one that stood out is the idea that the 2016 Democratic Party primary was ‘rigged’ against Senator Bernie Sanders and favored Secretary Hillary Clinton. The proof, for her, was the “Joint Fund-Raising Agreement between the DNC, the Hillary Victory Fund, and Hillary for America.” The agreement discloses information on the level of control that Clinton actually had when it came to items ranging from the party’s finances and staffing decisions.
She is right; it was reported before. As a matter of fact, there is a particular quote from former DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz that shares what the agreement was designed to do. In the Politico piece, she states: “Through this agreement and others we will sign with our party’s candidates, we are building the organization we will need now to make sure that whoever our nominee is, they are in the best possible position to win next November.”
After Brazile’s confession of the Joint Fund-Raising Agreement’s giving a considerable amount of control over to Clinton, it would seem that the nominee with “the best possible position to win” was believed to be Clinton, since she was being given the amount of power that she received, per the agreement. Obviously, this is not necessarily illegal, but it can be deemed unethical as it would stack far more chips in Clinton’s hands as she ran to be the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee. Plus, after reading more of the actual agreement, it is clear that the agreement was for the general election, but, as Alex Seitz-Wald pointed out, Clinton still had more influence in the primaries.
Plus, with the help of leaked emails divulging statements made by people like Wasserman Schultz, the inappropriate support that Clinton received and the bias towards Sanders and his campaign was laid bare. These emails also eventually led to the former DNC chair resigning from her position.
Warren Agrees That the DNC System was Rigged
After Brazile’s piece in Politico, Sen. Elizabeth Warren was asked about her thoughts today on CNN by Jake Tapper. Initially, Warren gave a real political answer and spoke about the revelations as being “a test for Tom Perez,” the current chair of the Democratic National Committee.
But Tapper pushed again with the question and made it known that there was not much time in the segment. One can imagine that he was looking for a one-word response: either “yes” or “no”. Warren affirmed that the system was rigged against Sanders.
Of course, another question then arises out of Brazile’s startling revelations and Warren’s confirmation of it. The question becomes: what is to be done to make sure that this kind of rigging does not take place again? It is quite apparent that it is not enough to have knowledge of unethical behavior happening in your party; something must be done to level the playing field for all candidates involved.
How ironic it is that Clinton, as Brazile points out, had “made campaign finance reform part of her platform,” but she may actually be part of the reason that it needs to be reformed.
Originally published on The Daily Nerv – November 4, 2017
Jerome Danner is a member of Project 21, an initiative of The National Center for Public Policy Research. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook for more of his thoughts and commentary. For more of Jerome’s writing, please check out his website. Jerome accepts email at firstname.lastname@example.org.