Published on Tuesday, February 21, 2017 by Common Dreams
The Stakes in the Race for Democratic National Committee Chair
by Tom Gallagher
One leading candidate for Democratic National Committee Chair recently said, "We heard loudly and clearly yesterday from Bernie supporters that the process was rigged and it was. And you've got to be honest about it. That's why we need a chair who is transparent." In a contest as hotly contested as the race for DNC Chair currently is, you expect this sort of talk. Only thing is, the statement didn’t come from Minnesota Representative Keith Ellison, the DNC candidate who supported Sanders in the presidential nomination race. This was actually Thomas Perez talking – who supported Hillary Clinton, served as Secretary of Labor in Barack Obama’s cabinet and has been endorsed by former Vice President Joe Biden.
[...] An active Clinton campaigner himself, he told Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta, in a WikiLeaks-published email, of warning audiences that "people don’t (sic) have the time to wait for Senator Sanders to complete his quest for the perfect health care system." And he further offered spin advice, suggesting to Podesta that if Clinton did well among minority voters in the Nevada caucuses, "the narrative changes from Bernie kicks ass among young voters to Bernie does well only among young white liberals." And hey, let’s give credit where credit is due here—the job Perez and other spin-meisters did on divorcing Sanders’s image from a fifty year plus history of civil rights support, dating back to a 1963 arrest at a pro-Chicago school integration demonstration—was a major contributor to denying him the nomination.
But in the interest of full disclosure, I must tell you that the opening quote in this story is contested. Not that there’s any dispute as to whether Perez actually spoke the words in a public forum. It’s apparently more a question of whether he was in his right mind when he did, as the very next day he was tweeting that "I mispoke" and that "Hillary became our nominee fair and square." [...]
[... A] Perez win in this race will make a lot of people conclude that the Democratic Party just can’t change its stripes. It will take the wind out of the sails of a lot of people the Democratic Party can’t afford to lose—the 70 percent of the under-30 voters who went with Sanders in the primaries. This may not be exactly the future that a lot of people in the DNC might have preferred. It may not be one they even understand. But the Democratic Party absolutely must engage that bloc. Tom Perez may do some very useful things in his future political career. But he is not man for this race.
[italics emphasis added] That is the barebones gist of truth in the item, but please link over and read the entire thing. There are sinews connecting barebones together.
BOTTOM LINE: How many ways to Sunday can you spin, the Nevada narrative, the tell-'em now what they want to hear, and then the "I mispoke?"
It is not some hot words spoken back in college, since recanted and discounted by passage of time. It suggests a very recent willingness of character to bend far too much with a wind. And then to bend back quickly, to a crosswind!
It casts doubt where doubt is poison. With the young who are impatient. With old folks like me also, rooted in the '60s, who are impatient.
Spin, and spin, and spin, surely can be done, but don't ask many outside of inner party interests to buy into spins.
That brand is patent medicine that will not sell. It will not heal, and should not be used.
Readers may recall how Nevada Democratic Party events ramping up to the convention were contentious. Having an instigating role in that, this email exchange published online by Wikileaks - emailing between Tom Perez and John Podesta, "from the road" months before the actual fireworks.
Is it a smoking gun? You decide, it is the one suggesting false spin about Bernie, as noted in the above reporting. Read it for yourself.
This was a part of the sabotage effort against Bernie from the Clinton faction; as bad as anything out of the DNC for which Wasserman-Schultz was cashiered. It is saying, in different words, "Here's a way to lie about the Sanders' popularity, why not do it?"
The Party needs unity. He now says. He is the man to unite. He now says. Publicly.
Wikileaks apparently does not have current emailing exchanges which might contradict or prove any true current unifying intent. We are asked to trust what the man says now, publicly. Except when he "mispeakes" and recants. Sure. Why not?