The excerpt from Donna Brazile’s new book published in Politico this morning isn’t getting big headlines on the major news sites yet. Yet.
But Brazile’s account of what she found when she replaced Debbie Wasserman-Schultz as the head of the Democratic National Committee in the summer of 2016 is truly shocking. It’s not just another political scandal. It’s a grenade without a pin rolling down the halls of the Democratic establishment.
There are hard things in this account that Democrats — and I consider myself one — must confront. Obama’s 2012 campaign left the party in debt, and his organization apparently did little to refill the coffers for subsequent cycles. Wasserman-Shultz was a disaster. Team Clinton controlled every aspect of the party apparatus long before the first primaries and caucuses. Brazile claims that even party insiders were unaware of these arrangements, or the depth of the problem at the DNC.
That’s just unacceptable.
There are lots of Clinton Democrats who have defended her against charges by Sanders Democrats that the Clinton campaign “rigged” the system and guaranteed her nomination. The terrible truth is that Clinton was very likely to win the nomination regardless of Sanders — her domination of the South practically insured it — but if Brazile is being honest there is now no doubt that Clinton used the party as an extension of her campaign during the primaries.
If nothing else, this changes every conversation we’ll have about the future of the party. And it should require all of us to stop and consider a great many attitudes.