Is this a nomination… or a coronation?
Party insiders are openly complaining that Democratic Party chair (and longtime Hillary Clinton pal) Debbie Wasserman Schultz is breaking rules left and right in a blatant attempt to hand Clinton the Democratic presidential nomination.
“It’s bad for Democrats and bad for the country, but she’s apparently decided that it’s good for her own career to hitch her wagon to Hillary Clinton,” Tim Canova, a professor of law and public finance at Nova Southeastern University, complained in a recent interview.
Others have been even more blunt.
“She’s acting as a shill for Hillary Clinton, doing everything in her power to ensure that no one will effectively challenge Hillary’s coronation as the nominee,” attorney and activist Miles Mogulescu wrote in a Huffington Post blog post demanding that the party fire Wasserman Schultz.
The impartiality of Wasserman Schultz has always been in question among Democrats. She was co-chair of Clinton’s failed 2008 bid for the presidency. Now, as chair of the entire party, she appears to be pulling every string she can to rig the nomination for her old friend.
For example, she moved to quickly cripple the Bernie Sanders campaign when a worker was caught snooping in the party’s database of Clinton voters – not because he hacked his way in, but because the security firm Wasserman Schultz hired dropped the firewall.
Sanders quickly fired the staffer, but Wasserman Schultz took great glee in rapidly handing down harsh punishment, cutting Sanders off from the party’s database, a move that effectively shut down his ability to contact potential supporters and raise money.
David Axelrod, who helped Barack Obama defeat Clinton in 2008, said it looks like the party “is putting finger on scale” for Hillary.
When it comes to violations that help Clinton, however, Wasserman Schultz is much more forgiving. She did nothing when one of her own top officials – Henry R. Muñoz III, finance chair of the Democratic National Committee – was caught organizing a fundraiser for Clinton, which is a direct violation of party rules.
But her biggest gift to the Clinton campaign has been the debates… or rather, lack of debates. Debates are often seen as high-risk, low-reward for candidates with as much frontrunner status as Clinton.
So instead of the 26 debates held in 2008, Wasserman Schultz has scheduled just six.
Even leaders of her own party have publicly demanded more, but Wasserman Schultz has been adamant that there will be just six.
And, unlike the GOP debates that are breaking viewership records, Wasserman Schultz and the DNC seem to be trying to ensure that as few people see the Democratic contests as possible.
She continues to schedule them for odd times – like just days before Christmas.
The only worse possible scheduling would be holding a debate at the same time as the NFL playoffs… and that’s exactly when the next debate will take place, on Jan. 17.
Critics say Clinton herself couldn’t have come up with a better schedule for her campaign.
Despite all the help she’s getting from party headquarters, Clinton is having a tough time cracking 50 percent in Democratic polls. She hit 50 on the nose in the most recent CNN poll, and fell to 46 percent in a Rasmussen Reports poll taken just before Christmas.
It’s clear the voters in her own party want another option – but it’s just as clear they won’t be allowed to have one.
— The Horn Editorial Staff