Leaked DNC Emails Threaten Democratic Unity
Thousands of emails sent and received by The Democratic National Committee staff members were released by Wikileaks on Friday. Many of the messages Wikileaks intercepted raise another cloud of suspicion over the Democratic establishment. Their treatment of former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders was of particular concern.
The emails span from January 2015 to May 2016, and consist of emails leaked from the accounts of seven DNC officials. One string of emails mentions potential ways to sabotage the Bernie Sanders campaign, specifically by focusing on his Jewish faith.
In one particular email sent on May 5th of this year, a DNC employee asked colleagues to “get someone to ask his belief” in God. The message suggests that pointing out Sanders’ Jewish faith could help the Clinton campaign in states such as Kentucky and West Virginia.
These emails opened up a window for Donald Trump. Just the day before the release of the leaked emails, Donald Trump gave his acceptance speech for the Republican nomination for president. He spent a significant portion of time criticizing the “rigged” system the Democratic establishment has set in place. Trump even expressed some pity for the Senator saying, “he never had a chance”. After the release of the emails the Republican nominee capitalized on the opportunity. “Leaked e-mails of DNC show plans to destroy Bernie Sanders. Mock his heritage and much more. On-line from Wikileakes, really vicious. RIGGED,” tweeted Trump this morning.
Another email from a DNC attorney also gained mass attention. The attorney appears to suggest ways to respond to a dispute between the Clinton and Sanders campaign on funding for state parties. The two camps had previously come to an agreement to provide matching funds in order to sponsor Democratic campaigns at the state level. The Sanders campaign vocalized its criticism of the Clinton campaign by accusing them of not handing over their fair share of the funds. Sanders’ campaign manager even characterized the campaign’s handling of the funds as “laundering” and “looting”.
These emails stretched so far as to catch CNN’s Jake Tapper in its web. Jason Seher of The Lead had an exchange with a DNC staffer which was forwarded on to other staffers. The message contained a line saying, “Need to know asap if we want to offer Jake Tapper questions to ask us.”
Yet another email-centric controversy threatens to throw Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party as a whole off-balance. In the midst of the aftermath of the private server debacle, Clinton now finds herself hoping she’ll still be able to count on the support of former supporters of Bernie Sanders. The timing could not be much worse, coming just days before the beginning of the Democratic National Convention which will focus on uniting the party in opposition of Donald Trump. If Sanders’ supporters take offense to this latest scandal, Donald Trump may just find himself picking up even more Sanders’ supporters who are tired of the games played by the establishment.
Throughout the primary, there wasn’t such concrete evidence as this to show the methods utilized by DNC officials to stifle Sanders’ campaign. However, with this latest news, many of his supporters may struggle to support Clinton despite Sanders’ recent endorsement.