Leaked Emails Show DNC Officials Constructing Anti-Bernie Narrative

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Democratic National Committee emails released by WikiLeaks show DNC officials conspiring to push an anti-Bernie Sanders narrative in the late stages of his campaign.

“Wondering if there’s a good Bernie narrative for a story, which is that Bernie never ever had his act together, that his campaign was a mess,” DNC press secretary Mark Paustenbach wrote in a May 21 email to communications director Luis Miranda. “Specifically, [DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz] had to call Bernie directly in order to get the campaign to do things because they’d either ignored or forgotten to something critical.”

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Email from Mark Paustenbach to Luis Miranda 05/21/2016

Paustenbach’s email came just days after a contentious Nevada state convention that Sanders supporters claimed had been rigged by party officials — a claim encouraged by Sanders. “At that convention the Democratic leadership used its power to prevent a fair and transparent process from taking place,” Sanders said in a statement afterwards.

Paustenbach stressed the need to create a narrative contrary to the one being pushed by Sanders’ supporters. “It’s not a DNC conspiracy, it’s because they never had their act together,” he insisted.


Paustenbach email 05/21/16

DNC officials displayed their hostility to the Sanders campaign in other ways as well.

One May 3 email from DNC Treasurer Andew Tobias to other DNC officials complained that the Sanders campaign was being “awfully unfair” by attacking Clinton’s fundraising tactics.

DNC Chief Financial Officer Brad Marshall forwarded the email to Chief Executive Officer Amy Dacey, who called for “a more aggressive approach” in pushing back against the Sanders’ campaign’s narrative.


“I think we need a more aggressive approach to push back on what is just total MISINFORMATION Can we have an internal discussion on what needs to happen here- we can’t let this continue on,” Dacey wrote.

Next week’s Democratic National Convention will be met with thousands of pro-Bernie Sanders protesters demonstrating against Hillary Clinton’s impending nomination.

Chuck Ross contributed to this report.

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