On March 5, 2016, Donna Brazile sent John Podesta and Jennifer Palmieri an email tipping them off about a question Hillary Clinton would be asked in a debate with Bernie Sanders the following night. This is the second time Brazile has been caught tipping off the Clinton campaign to a coming question. CNN, where Brazile was a contributor at the time, has issued a statement saying it is “completely uncomfortable” with her behavior and has cut ties with her.
The subject of the email was, “One of the questions directed to HRC tomorrow is from a woman with a rash.” The body of the email continued, “Her family has lead poison and she will ask what, if anything, will Hillary do as president to help the ppl of Flint.”
The next day, at a CNN town hall event in Flint featuring Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, Hillary was asked a question by Lee-Anne Walters. No mention was made of a rash but moderator Anderson Cooper did say that “one of her twin boys stopped growing. Her daughter lost her hair.” Walters asked, “After my family, the city of Flint and the children in D.C. were poisoned by lead, will you make a personal promise to me right now that as president in your first 100 days in office, you will make it a requirement that all public water systems must remove all lead service lines throughout the entire United States and notification made to the citizens that have said service lines?”
After Bernie Sanders gave his answer, Hillary responded, “Well, I agree completely. I want to go further though. I want to us to have an absolute commitment to getting rid of lead wherever it is because it’s not only in water systems. It’s also in soil and it’s in lead paint that is found mostly in older homes. That’s why 500,000 children have lead, lead in their bodies.”
The Hill reports CNN has issued a statement saying, “On October 14th, CNN accepted Donna Brazile’s resignation as a CNN contributor.” The statement continues, “We are completely uncomfortable with what we have learned about her interactions with the Clinton campaign while she was a CNN contributor.”
This is not the first time Brazile has been caught leaking questions in advance to the Clinton camp. Earlier this month another leaked email from Donna Brazile included the text of a question about the death penalty which Hillary would be asked at a town hall event the following day.
Brazile has denied ever getting questions in advance or forwarding them to the Clinton camp. When pressed on the email by Fox News’ Megyn Kelly, Brazile replied, “once again I’ve said it and I’ve said it on the record and I’ll say it on the record and I’ll keep saying it on the record. I am not going to try to validate falsified information.” Basically, she is claiming the leaked emails can’t be trusted without actually denying she sent them.
I wrote at the time the first tip off email came to light that, if it weren’t a few weeks before the election, Brazile would be out of her job as DNC chair. Her denials were not believable then and now we have a second instance that looks like exactly the same thing. Given that the previous chair, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, was pushed out of the job because leaked emails revealed the DNC was favoring Clinton over Bernie Sanders*, I don’t see how Brazile lasts through the end of November.
You can see Lee-Anne Walters ask her question at about 14: 30 in this video of the debate:
Correction: I accidentally wrote that Wasserman-Schultz was favoring Sanders. Corrected to say favoring Clinton over Sanders.