Report: DNC drops partnership with Women's March as co-chair Carmen Perez admits fault (Update)

The Jewish News Syndicate is reporting this morning that the Democratic National Committee has dropped its partnership with Women’s March. The DNC itself hasn’t confirmed this report yet so take it with a grain of salt for now:

The Democratic National Committee has dropped its partnership in the Women’s March over anti-Semitism concerns, according to a Democratic source.

This development comes amid accusations of anti-Semitism within the movement’s leadership, causing many organizations to drop their support of the this year’s march, scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 19. There have been calls for firms to back out.

If confirmed, the DNC would be following in the footsteps of a number of other groups who have distanced themselves from Women’s March. Last week the Southern Poverty Law Center quietly dropped its support, though it refused to issue a statement condemning the anti-Semitism of the Women’s March. Other groups that have stopped associating with Women’s March include Emily’s List, the National Council of Jewish Women, and Greenpeace.

Today, Carmen Perez has a piece in the Forward which takes a much more conciliatory tone in an apparent attempt to limit the damage. Perez admits the leaders have “failed” in the past but claims things have changed over the past several months:

As many readers of The Forward will know, the leadership of the Women’s March has come under fire in the past several months over accusations of anti-Semitism. I want to be unequivocal in affirming that the organization failed to act rapid enough to condemn the egregious and hateful statements made by a figure who is not associated with the Women’s March in any way. This failure caused deep hurt and pain, especially because our movement is dedicated to centering inclusiveness.

The March has evolved over the past few months as we humbly acknowledged our failings. I want to be clear: our movement is a safe place for Jewish women, our leadership abhors anti-Semitism and homophobia, and these kinds of comments are and will always be unacceptable. Going forward, we are committed to engaging in courageous conversations that break down the barriers to understanding and building deep relationships that lead us towards the “beloved community” of which Dr. King dreamed for all people. We seek to better our movement each and every day to remain deserving of the support of progressives of all backgrounds.

They can’t even say his name? In any case, all of this is a lie. Farrakhan is associated with the Women’s March in a very specific way: He has been praised by several of the co-chairs, most especially Tamika Mallory.

Also, it’s not that they didn’t act rapidly enough to denounce him, it’s that they still won’t denounce him even as the momentum has been building against them. If the group has evolved over the past few months, why was Tamika Mallory still unable to denounce Farrakhan yesterday on the View? When asked pointedly if she would condemn his bigotry by co-host Meghan McCain, Mallory refused to do so. That’s not a change. That’s exactly what she has done for the past year.

I get the impression that Carmen Perez’ piece in The Forward was supposed to coincide with Mallory’s appearance on the view in a way that the messages would reinforce one another. But that’s not what happened. Instead, Perez sounds chastened and Mallory remains unwilling to condemn her favorite anti-Semite. The DNC is smart to back away from this trainwreck.

Update: It’s looking like this has been confirmed but, as with the SPLC, the DNC is dropping out without saying anything about why or criticizing the Women’s March at all. From the Daily Beast:

As recently as the morning of January 13, 2019, the committee was listed among the “2019 Women’s March Sponsors,” according to an Internet archive search, and it is not longer on the website as of Tuesday. A DNC official declined to comment on the timing of the removal of their name from the list but the committee offered the following about its decision for dropping out of the march.

“The DNC stands in solidarity with all those fighting for women’s rights and holding the Trump administration and Republican lawmakers across the country accountable,” said Sabrina Singh, DNC Deputy Communications Director. “Women are on the front lines of fighting back against this administration and are the core of our Democratic Party.”

Another profile in courage.