Michael Sainato reports for The Observer:
On October 12, WikiLeaks released part four and five of Clinton campaign Chair John Podesta’s emails, with part six to be released on October 13, and part seven to follow on October 14.
“As soon as the nomination is wrapped up, I will be your biggest surrogate,” current Interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) Donna Brazile, wrote to Podesta in a January 2016 email. As a Vice Chair of the DNC, Brazile was bound to neutrality per the charter, but as shown in several emails released so far, that was not the case.
“I pushed back hard on this, and Axe. So weird to attack the kids the night before the first primary,” Brazile wrote in an email she forwarded to Podesta about what CNN was doing while she served as a CNN contributor.
On October 10, an email was released that showed Brazile tipping off the Clinton campaign to an outreach campaign being conducted by the Sanders campaign. Brazile defended herself on Twitter claiming she also sent the Sanders campaign “advice,” but did not release or cite any examples.
On October 11, Mediaite’s Jordan Chariton first reported another email that showed Brazile tipping off the Clinton campaign to a question on the death penalty that would be asked at a CNN Town Hall the next day. Brazile was a CNN contributor at the time, and that wasn’t her only helpful tip. “For the debate team,” she wrote in a March email about the Voting Rights Act, forwarded to Podesta.
In 2013, during an interview with ABC News, Brazile said, “if Clinton gets in the race, there will be a coronation of her,” foreshadowing that she and the rest of the DNC and Democratic Party would line up behind Hillary Clinton as the nominee before a single person voted in the Democratic primaries.
In a March 2016 email, Mark Alan Siegel, a former New York State Assemblyman and Democratic official, advised the Clinton campaign staff to offer Bernie Sanders and his supporters a reduction in future super delegates to pacify them. “So if we ‘give’ Bernie this in the Convention’s rules committee, his people will think they’ve ‘won’ something from the Party Establishment,” he wrote. “And it functionally doesn’t make any difference anyway. They win. We don’t lose. Everyone is happy.”
Neera Tanden, president of the Center for American Progress which publishes Think Progress, wrote in a January 2016 email, “But I should say that I would do whatever Hillary needs always. I owe her a lot. And I’m a loyal soldier.”
An April 2015 email describes the Clinton campaign and DNC coordinating to rig the debate schedule for Clinton’s benefit. The debate schedule was a commonly cited criticism against then-DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who resigned after the WikiLeaks release of DNC emails in July showed her overt favoritism for Clinton all through the primaries.
“Through internal discussions, we concluded that it was in our interest to: 1) limit the number of debates (and the number in each state); 2) start the debates as late as possible; 3) keep debates out of the busy window between February 1 and February 27, 2016 (Iowa to South Carolina)” read the email from Charlie Baker, a senior advisor to the Clinton campaign from the Dewey Square Group. “The other campaigns have advocated (not surprisingly) for more debates and for the schedule to start significantly earlier.”
And then there’s the overly docile press, who were so eager to help Clinton get elected. In one email chain discussing the upcoming release of exchanges between Clinton and writer Sidney Blumenthal, insiders noted that the Associated Press appeared to be willing to allow the Clinton campaign to plant favorable stories. “[T]hey are considering placing a story with a friendly at the AP (Matt Lee or Bradley Klapper), that would lay this out before the majority on the committee has a chance to realize what they have and distort it,” wrote Nick Merrill, the Clinton campaign’s traveling press secretary.
“She is going to read me the story later today off the record to further assure me,” Clinton campaign Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri wrote in an email to Podesta and other staff about New York Times‘ Maggie Haberman coordinating directly with the campaign to provide Clinton with favorable coverage.
Read more at The Observer.