Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz was so furious with Mika Brzezinski after the MSNBC “Morning Joe” co-host called on her to resign as chair of the Democratic National Committee back in May that she ordered her deputy to complain to Phil Griffin, the head of the cable network.
The fascinating exchange, which also includes irate emails from Wasserman Schultz to NBC political director Chuck Todd, were released on Friday by WikiLeaks.
[dcquiz] During the May 18 “Morning Joe” show, Brzezinski said that Wasserman Schultz should step down because of her and the party’s treatment of Bernie Sanders. Brzezinski and her co-host, Joe Scarborough, railed against the DNC, accusing the party of mounting a campaign to ensure that Hillary Clinton was chosen as Democratic nominee.
In an email sent out later that day, Wasserman Schultz wrote to DNC communications director Luis Miranda, calling Brzezinski’s remarks “the LAST straw.”
“This is outrageous. She needs to apologize,” Wasserman Schultz continued while ordering Miranda to call MSNBC chief Phil Griffin.
Six minutes later, Wasserman Schultz sent an email directly to Todd, who also hosts NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“Chuck, this must stop,” reads the subject line of the email.
Later that day Todd talked to Miranda. The pair appeared to have discussed setting up a phone call between Brzezinski and Wasserman Schultz.
“Between us, You think the call is a good idea?” asked Todd, who seems to have suggested that he would attempt to talk Brzezinski down from her strong position regarding Wasserman Schultz.
“Not necessarily. If Mika just doesn’t like her, I’m not sure it’s worth either of their time. I’ve lowered her expectations, but don’t know. If you think Mika is set in stone I’m happy to kill it,” wrote Miranda.
“I don’t know. She can do 180s after these calls. It can’t get worse,” Todd replied.
In an email sent the next day, Miranda told Wasserman Schultz that “Mika is willing to do a call with you, so we need to know if you want to make that happen too.”
“We figure it can’t get worse, so worth having a call,” he added.
“At this point, why would I do that?” Wasserman Schultz replied.
“She’s already served as a judge and jury without even bothering to talk to me. Not sure why I should trust having a conversation with her would make any difference. Or that she even matters, to be frank,” she wrote to Miranda later.
While the DNC and Wasserman Schultz have insisted that they did not stack the deck against Sanders, other emails contained in the Wikileaks release undermine the claim.
In one email exchange from May, DNC officials discussed a “more aggressive approach to push back” against what they called “misinformation” coming out of the Sanders campaign. (RELATED: Leaked Emails Show DNC Officials Constructing Anti-Bernie Narrative)
In other emails, DNC officials discussed planting questions for Sanders about his religion. Sanders had cited his Jewish heritage on the campaign trail, but it is believed that he is Atheist.
In an email to Miranda and another DNC official, DNC chief financial officer Brad Marshall suggested having someone in Kentucky or West Virginia “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,” Marshall wrote.
In a May 21 email exchange Wasserman Schultz herself displayed anti-Sanders bias.
After the democratic socialist said that he would remove Wasserman Schultz from her position as DNC chair if elected president, she scoffed: “He isn’t going to be president.”