I honestly thought we might have seen the last of the thoroughly disgraced Donna Brazile, but apparently some habits are hard to kick. Not only is she still the interim chair of the DNC, but she’s getting speaking appearances. During one of those this week she decided to address the affair which made her persona non grata at CNN… the Democratic primary debate cheating scandal. Was it to apologize? To ask everyone’s forgiveness and for a place in the party’s power structure?
Nope. She’s still in denial and acting as if she’s somehow the victim in all of this. (Washington Post)
In an appearance at Hollins University on Monday, Brazile looked back at the controversy. “CNN never gave me a question,” she said. Indeed, it’s apparent that she secured at least one of the questions from the town-hall co-host organization, TVOne. “I wish CNN had given me some other things, like the ability to defend myself rather than ripping me a new one.”
CNN did hammer Brazile, as the boss of the network, Jeff Zucker, called her actions “disgusting” in an internal discussion. Actually, her actions were better described as “logical” or “natural,” given that Brazile is a political advocate first and foremost.
What Brazile is doing here is obviously yet another attempt to be too clever by half, but it’s simply not going to wash. You’ll notice how carefully she parses her words, making two related comments:
1. CNN never gave me a question.
2. I wish CNN had given me some other things, like the ability to defend myself rather than ripping me a new one.
As to the first claim, she’s technically correct based on everything we’ve been able to find out. Note that she never says I didn’t give questions to the Clinton campaign or I didn’t cheat. She simply sticks to saying that CNN didn’t give her questions. True enough. In the first debate flap she clearly got the question from TVOne host Roland Martin. (None of his fellow debate moderator Jake Tapper’s questions showed up.)
In the second debate in Flint, Michigan which came under scrutiny, as I discovered from someone directly involved in the charity event where the leak supposedly occurred, Donna Brazile attempted to cheat , but she failed when her intended questioner was not selected to take part in the forum. The information she sent to the Clinton campaign on that one turned out to be bogus because her contact was kept on the sidelines. So while it initially looked like the question came to her from Anderson Cooper and his staff, it actually didn’t.
As to Brazile saying that CNN didn’t give her a chance to “defend herself” in the matter, what does that even mean? They’ve cut ties with her entirely. Is she implying that she’s still under some sort of gag order from the network which prevents her from clearing her good name? Hogwash. If there was more to this story we didn’t know she’s been free to clear the air for some time now. This is nothing but mendacity designed to throw up a smokescreen.
This was one of the ugliest chapters in an already ugly election and Donna Brazile was exposed as the poster child for a rigged system. (In this case, rigged against Bernie Sanders.) If the DNC continues to do business with her it’s a clear signal that they haven’t learned their lesson and the Democrats deserve to spend an extended time in the wilderness until they can reestablish their credibility.