President Trump used to love calling former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton “crooked Hillary” during the bitter and divisive 2016 campaign. But now Trump’s sentiments — and the beliefs of those on the political right — are being corroborated from the most unlikely of sources: Clinton’s former friend and Democratic strategist Donna Brazile.
Brazile, a former CNN contributor, rocked the political world yesterday when she said Clinton “rigged” the Democratic primary so that she would win the party’s nomination over formidable rival Bernie Sanders.
In an explosive piece published in Politico magazine to promote her book, Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House, Brazile said she found out about an agreement made in August 2015 that Clinton would have “control (of) the party’s finances, strategy, and all the money raised.” This would be in exchange for dealing with the Democratic Party’s mountainous debt from the 2012 reelection campaign for Barack Obama.
“Hillary for America (the campaign) and the Hillary Victory Fund (its joint fundraising vehicle with the DNC) had taken care of 80 percent of the remaining debt in 2016, about $10 million, and had placed the party on an allowance,” she explained.
This is something that normally doesn’t take place until someone wins the the party’s nomination. However, on this occasion, Clinton was running the financial arm of the Democratic party. Brazile didn’t say it was illegal, but she did say it “looked unethical.”
“If the fight had been fair, one campaign would not have control of the party before the voters had decided which one they wanted to lead,” Brazile wrote. “This was not a criminal act, but as I saw it, it compromised the party’s integrity.”
This revelation is rich with irony. Brazile was fired from her role as a CNN contributor after she had secretly given Clinton a heads-up on debate questions during last year’s campaign.
Brazile, former interim chair of the Democratic National Committee, contacted Sanders and said she “promised” she would look into whether Clinton had “rigged” the party system and could find no evidence of rigging — at first.
“I had tried to search out any other evidence of internal corruption that would show that the DNC was rigging the system to throw the primary to Hillary, but I could not find any in party affairs or among the staff,” Brazile wrote. “I was happy to see that I had found none. Then I found this agreement.”
Brazile did not say when she found the agreement but only noted that it was “weeks” before the election. She did say that Sanders accepted the sad news “stoically” when she informed him of what she’d discovered.