Debbie Wasserman Schultz: WikiLeaks Controversy And A Class Action Lawsuit On Eve Of Democratic National Convention

Anya Wassenberg

Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Chair of the Democratic National Committee, faces the WikiLeaks fallout and will not be among the speakers at the upcoming Democratic Convention in Philadelphia.

Wasserman Schultz and the Democratic Party are facing a class action lawsuit over allegations of a rigged Democratic primary, but it may only be the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the revelations stemming from the recent dump of thousands of emails from DNC staffers by WikiLeaks.

According to The Observer, the suit alleges six different claims related to fraud, misrepresentation and negligence, and calls for financial retribution to the Bernie Sanders donors named in the lawsuit on the grounds that the Democratic primaries had been rigged in favor of Hilary Clinton from the outset.

In looking at documents from the DNC's own computer files, the case is being made that the Democratic Party had its mind made up long before there was a vote to the effect. The lawsuit, which launched on June 28 in Miami, didn't seem to rattle Democratic Party heads. However, a bigger storm was brewing on the horizon as the WikiLeaks scandal broke late this week.

As the party chair and someone who played a key role in shaping the primary, Debbie Wasserman Schultz has come out as the fall woman after news of the WikiLeaks email release hit the media. A clear pattern emerged of party members working to derail the Bernie Sanders campaign. Sanders supporters have long accused the Democratic Party faithful of using such tactics as limiting debates. One of the emails features Democratic Party Chief Financial Officer Brad Marshall speculating on how Sanders might be forced into talking about religion to underscore the fact that they believed he was an atheist and that he has a Jewish background.

The Tampa Bay Times reported on heated email exchanges between Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Mika Brzezinski, host of MSNBC's Morning Joe show over whether Wasserman Schultz should step down as DNC Chair. Schultz ends by demanding his apology for suggesting she should resign.

The revelations have party organizers working to downplay Debbie Wasserman Schultz's role in the upcoming convention. The move is described as a way of trying to keep the peace with disgruntled Sanders Democrats and trying to avoid a chaotic convention floor.

"She's been quarantined."
"I don't think she is qualified to be the chair of the DNC not only for these awful emails, which revealed the prejudice of the DNC, but also because we need a party that reaches out to working people and young people, and I don't think her leadership style is doing that."

Debbie Wasserman Schultz will open the 2016 Democratic National Convention tomorrow, July 25.

[Image by Andrew Burton/Getty Images]