According to a memo in an attachment to a leaked email released by WikiLeaks, Democratic Party elites were engaged in a serious discussion about replacing the notoriously corrupt (and apparently hard to work with) Debbie Wasserman Schultz with Jennifer Granholm as DNC chair last December.
Jennifer Granholm was the governor of Michigan from 2003 to 2011, the state that brought us the examples of wonderful governance in both Detroit and Flint, but it gets better. Politicoreports that Granholm has been spending her post-governor years working for pro-Clinton super PACs, first for the extremely powerful Priorities USA Action, and now for Correct the Record.
Correct the Record, or CTR as it’s commonly known, is the widely reviled super PAC known for spending millions of dollars employing actual internet shills to fight the online populist groundswell of enthusiasm behind candidates like Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump. In the days before widespread internet access, WikiLeaks, and alternative media, populist candidates could be successfully marginalized using the well-documented leverage that party elites have over the corporate media, reported in articles like this one by The Intercept and this one by the Observer. Now that our species has gained a radically unprecedented ability to network and share ideas and information, those conventional propaganda tactics have become less effectual, hence Correct the Record.
Again, this email is from back in December, so it would be unfair of us to assert that the Democrats would try and put an actual CTR boss in its chair after the brazen assaults on democracy by Debbie Wasserman Schultz and her equally corrupt acting replacement Donna Brazile. Surely after two back-to-back spectacular crash-and-burn scandalous chairpersons (three if you understandably count Tim Kaine), nobody in the party would think at this point that it would be prudent to replace Donna Brazile with a woman who gets paid to deceive social media users into thinking that Hillary Clinton has an abundance of enthusiastic supporters.
Would they? I mean, these are the same people who thought Brazile was the best possible replacement after Wasserman Schultz’s role was revealed in the single greatest political scandal for a first-world country in living memory. They looked around the room and said, “You! Yeah, you, the lady who just violated our Charter by passing CNN debate questions in advance to Hillary Clinton and acted as a mole against the Sanders campaign. You’re just the gal we need to save our tattered reputation!” So maybe we shouldn’t get too lax about that.
Nevertheless, my main point here is that in each of these cases, these selections are the best the Democratic Party can do. They picked the crony corporatist Kaine, who almost certainly vacated his spot in exchange for the veep slot to allow Wasserman Schultz to rig the primary for her friend and former employer Hillary, then they replaced DWS with someone they already knew was corrupt to the core, and now we learn they were also considering filling that seat with someone whose job is to manipulate and deceive for one of the most despised political establishments in America.
I mean, are these really the cream of the crop, DNC? They’re the pick of the litter? I hate to think of how bad the rejects must be.
The DNC has to choose this replacement very carefully. If the party is to survive as a democratic institution, they have to inspire trust in the DNC’s democratic processes. The next chair will have to do a lot of apologizing, a lot of reassuring, show a lot of transparency and dedication to due process, and overall make it very clear that the next primaries will be run in a democratic and evenhanded manner.
Or else, no one will show up. No one will show up to be a candidate, no one will show up to vote, no one will fundraise, no one will be a delegate, no one will dip into their life savings to go to Philadelphia as a delegate. All the things that Bernie supporters did, they did because they believed in the process.
There is no such belief anymore. The next DNC chair will have a tough job convincing anyone that they’ve changed their ways, but it’s their only choice unless they want to leave the democratic process behind altogether and just rule by brute force.
God help us if they choose that.
[Featured Image by Paul Sancya/AP Images]