By Caitlin Johnstone / medium.com.
The establishment liberal spin machine has been working overtime the last 24 hours to make it seem as though former acting DNC chair Donna Brazile had not admitted what she’d admitted in an excerpt from her book published by Politico on Thursday.
Their argument, if you can call it that, rests on the claim that a document which unquestionably shows inappropriate bias and collusion does not show inappropriate bias and collusion because it contains a paragraph which says the document should not be construed as containing inappropriate bias and collusion. This is really boring and stupid, but since the Clinton cult is circulating this nonsense all over social media I figure I should probably write something for people to refute it with.
It makes sense that they’d want to lie about such a thing. A top-level DNC insider admitting to something that Sanders voters have been screaming for over a year, and admitting it to a large mainstream audience, is a very big deal. Admitting wrongdoing means having to make changes, and having to make changes could mean no longer being able to effectively sabotage the agendas of their progressive base, which would make the donors who control the Democratic party and the plutocrats who own the mainstream media unhappy.
It makes sense, then, that when NBC published the Hillary Victory Fund agreement between the DNC and Hillary For America, they and their acolytes spent yesterday running around screaming “Great news, everyone! Turns out we’re perfect after all, no need to change anything!” when they saw the following paragraph:
Nothing in this agreement shall be construed to violate the DNC’s obligation of impartiality and neutrality through the Nominating process. All activities performed under this agreement will be focused exclusively on preparations for the General Election and not the Democratic Primary. Further we understand you may enter into similar agreements with other candidates.
The only problem with that is that by no stretch of the imagination does it nullify the blatant power advantage Clinton was given by the rest of the agreement, which does indeed violate the DNC’s obligation of impartiality and neutrality through the nominating process. Scribbling the equivalent of “Oh hey, to anyone reading this in the future, we agree with each other that we’re not breaking any rules here” does not mean that rules were not broken. Scribbling “this is not a rule violation” on a rule violation, René Magritte style, doesn’t stop it from being a rule violation.
We’ve seen no indication that any similar agreement was entered into with any other candidate besides Hillary Clinton. Not from Sanders, nor from Brazile, nor from the DNC, nor from any former Clinton campaign staffers, nor from WikiLeaks. Nor could the same agreement have been made with any other candidate, since the Clinton campaign was giving itself authorities over DNC functioning which would be nonsensical if two parties had them, like that it would share authority with the DNC “over strategic decisions over the staffing, budget, expenditures, and general election related communications, data, technology, analytics, and research.”
Regarding the claim by plutocracy teat sucklings like Howard Dean that that the agreement applied only to the general election (which would make the Clinton campaign’s added control of DNC operations standard practice) and not to the primary (which would make it a violation of the DNC’s Impartiality Clause), this is pure hogwash. Firstly, the dates on the document plainly contradict this assertion, as they were set during the primary contest and scheduled to end long before Clinton became the nominee, beginning September 1, 2015 and ending March 31, 2016. The DNC convention in which Clinton became the nominee wasn’t until July 2016.
Secondly, as the Campaign Legal Center’s FEC reform specialist Brendan Fischer notes, the claim that the document is intended to focus on the general election and not the primary is directly contradicted by the rest of the document, which explicitly gave Hillary For America control of every communication which mentioned a primary candidate. The agreement was very clearly and specifically geared toward giving Clinton an advantage in the primary elections.
Journalist Mike Sainato points out that with the agreement the Hillary campaign gave itself the authority to pre-approve DNC hires, an authority it then used to wave through the hiring of DNC Communications Director Luis Miranda. Miranda, one of only two candidates Hillary For America allowed the DNC to choose from per the agreement, would later resign from his position in disgrace after the DNC leaks revealed he’d participated in a discussion about how to construct a narrative against Sanders.
Perhaps far more impactful, Tim Tagaris, former Digital Fundraising Director for the Sanders campaign, said after Brazile’s admission that without the joint fundraising agreement Clinton would have been “majorly out-raised by Bernie Sanders in the primary”.
This joint fundraising scheme was why we saw things like Clinton inviting her donor class friends to dine with her and George Clooney for a whopping $353,400 a couple in April of 2016. Such large individual donations were permitted by campaign finance law via a loophole because the money was meant to be distributed throughout state party races across the country, but according to Donna Brazile virtually all of it got funneled to the Clinton campaign.
Right around the time of the convention, the leaked emails revealed Hillary’s campaign was grabbing money from the state parties for its own purposes, leaving the states with very little to support down-ballot races. A Politico story published on May 2, 2016, described the big fund-raising vehicle she had launched through the states the summer before, quoting a vow she had made to rebuild “the party from the ground up … when our state parties are strong, we win. That’s what will happen.”
Yet the states kept less than half of 1 percent of the $82 million they had amassed from the extravagant fund-raisers Hillary’s campaign was holding, just as Gary had described to me when he and I talked in August.
This was all happening long before Clinton became Democratic presidential nominee in July of 2016.
So yeah. Don’t pee on my leg and tell me it’s raining, corporate liberal pundits. Don’t tell me the public admission of last year’s acting DNC chair confirming what we’ve been saying about the Democratic primary isn’t a big deal because some lawyer tacked a “we’re not doing the thing we’re doing” disclaimer onto the agreement. This is real. This is happening. Things are shaking up. Your days are numbered. Try to spend them in a more dignified manner going forward.