Schultz's resignation from the DNC presents an opportunity progressives need to seize
So long Debbie, wish I could say it was good knowing you. On the heels of the Democratic National Convention, a major potential shakeup may have just occurred. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, head of the DNC, has announced her resignation in the aftermath of the WikiLeaks email scandal.
On the one hand, her resignation may amount to nothing. Then again, progressives may have an important opportunity here to seize the reigns of the Democratic Party. But while progressives may be able to seize an opportunity, Hillary Clinton is passing one up.
It has been suspected by Bernie Sanders and his supporters that Schultz and the DNC were unfairly biased against him, there was never any direct evidence to accuse anyone of misconduct until now. WikiLeaks has revealed some 20,000 emails from DNC officials (including Schultz), the genie is definitely out of the bottle.
With this WikiLeaks revelation, it is now abundantly clear that Schultz and the DNC were biased against Bernie in the primary. In these emails, Bernie and his campaign were called “obnoxious” by DNC officials. These same officials also discussed strategies to get Bernie to lose in certain primaries.
One of the strategies discussed was to get anonymous “sources” to question Bernie’s religious faith in the media before the Kentucky and West Virginia primaries. One official in particular, DNC CFO Brad Marshall, detailed how attacking Bernie on the question of religion could swing things against him. Marshall claimed his Southern Baptist “peeps” in Kentucky and West Virginia would have “several points difference” with a candidate who is a supposed atheist:
“It might may no difference, but for KY and WVA can we get someone to ask his belief. Does he believe in a God. He had skated on saying he has a Jewish heritage. I think I read he is an atheist. This could make several points difference with my peeps. My Southern Baptist peeps would draw a big difference between a Jew and an atheist.”
It gets worse. Debbie Wasserman Schultz expressed her own personal anti-Bernie bias in an email discussing Bernie’s campaign. Schultz explicitly stated in an email that Bernie “isn’t going to be president.”
The DNC was supposed to be a neutral body during the primary, and it is clear now that it wasn’t. The camel’s back has finally broken, and progressives have finally gotten Schultz out of the picture. Not only has Schultz resigned as head of the DNC, she will no longer be presiding over the convention in Philadelphia. She has in fact been dropped entirely from the convention’s schedule, an effective “quarantine”, as some officials have put it.
Some in the Hillary camp have been claiming that the email leak was Russia’s fault and that Putin is doing this to help Donald Trump win. Aside from the fact that sounds like a horrible defensive cover, that theory isn’t even relevant to what we know now.
Even if Putin and the Russians helped leak the emails to help Trump, that doesn’t make the content of emails less true. Schultz and the DNC had it out for Bernie, and their bias has now cost Schultz her job. You can blame it on Putin all you want, in the end, Schultz and the DNC are guilty of bias against Bernie in the primary. This was a clear violation of what the party should have done, and there is no defending it.
Remember during the primary when Hillary surrogates and supporters were claiming Bernie supporters were conspiratorial for suspecting the DNC to be biased against him? Now that we have proof that the DNC was biased, the same people who accused progressives of conspiracy theories are now resorting to conspiracy theories to overlook this scandal. We should teach them irony, but I’m afraid they might try and kill it.
Out of Schultz’s fall may rise an interesting opportunity for progressives. The backlash from the WikiLeaks scandal is only just beginning, and it is beginning as the Democratic National Convention is getting started. Signs are already rising of troubles at the convention, which had been brewing before the WikiLeaks story. Prior to this, Hillary and Bernie delegates were fighting with each other over the removal of super delegates from future primaries, which got heated.
The anger of progressives now has a legitimate focus. Now that it is undeniable that Bernie was treated unfairly in the primary by an unneutral DNC, Bernie and his progressive supporters have the chance to push for a major overhaul in Democratic Party politics.
While it may not be visible now, the Democratic establishment is nervous about the outcome of the WikiLeaks revelations. This provides progressives with a rallying point to push for a deep change in the Democratic Party. If the Party chooses to resist further, as it very well could, then they do so at their own peril.
Now that it is clear Schultz and the DNC were wrongly biased and actively worked against Bernie’s campaign, almost every decision and appointment (including to the convention) is subject to question. Unless the DNC agrees to purge the party of the corrupt allies of Schultz, especially within important party committees, then progressives can effectively stand against them and have a good case for doing so. Progressives should also demand that Hillary disavow her relationship with Schultz and cleanse her campaign of Schultz’s influences.
If your candidate had been unfairly shafted in an election, then it is only normal you would be angry and demand accountability from those who corrupted the process. While suspicion is one thing, confirmation is another. Hillary and the DNC cannot deny that the process was unbiased, which gives progressives a point to stand our ground. A progressive revolt on the heels of the convention and a contentious general election is the last thing Hillary and the Democrats would want.
Ousting Schultz may give progressives the opportunity we have been waiting for. We actually have a reasonable and justified point in opposing the DNC, and Hillary Clinton to an extent. We must stand strong and demand radical concessions from the DNC. If they do not accept, then they do not get our vote.
It is now reported that, despite the immense scandal and nature of Schultz’s resignation, Hillary is making her an “Honorary Chairwoman” of her campaign. Of course she is. Despite the fact that Schultz is clearly a major culprit in the anti-Bernie bias during the campaign, and that Bernie’s supporters despise her, Hillary is still keeping her within the fold. Not only that, but Hillary released a statement praising Schultz for being a “longtime friend.”
This snub to progressives comes on the heels of another snub over the VP pick. Choosing Tim Kaine as VP was a huge mistake for Hillary. The WikiLeaks email scandal makes this pick look even worse. The main issue is that Hillary seems so certain that she has this election wrapped up, that she is brazenly ignoring progressive anger towards what has unfolded. She is so convinced they will have no other choice but to vote for her, so therefore she doesn’t need to pander to them. Hillary’s going to be in for a shocking surprise come November if that attitude of hers doesn’t change fast.
Hillary is passing up a major opportunity to rally progressives around her, ensuring a victory over Donald Trump. If she were to disavow Schultz and move to help cleanse her ilk from the campaign and Democratic Party, this could perhaps be a good start. Of course, she is Hillary Clinton. If there is one thing Hillary is better at then snubbing the left, its running a terrible campaign.
Progressives have a huge opportunity here to potentially reshape the Democratic Party. Schultz’s resignation may mean nothing ultimately, but that will certainly be true if we do not act. Now that we know the facts, we can use it as a powerful tool against the establishment. We must do everything necessary, at this point. Do not hold your nose.