DNC interim chair Donna Brazile loses CNN gig after Wikileaks release
The latest revelation comes as Democratic leaders try to restore trust, especially among supporters of Bernie Sanders's presidential campaign.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP
Democratic National Committee interim chair Donna Brazile no longer works for CNN, the 24-hour news network confirmed Monday, shortly after Wikileaks published another email from Ms. Brazile to members of Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign.
Brazile, who came under fire earlier in October when Wikileaks revealed she had slipped Mrs. Clinton's campaign chairman a draft debate question about the death penalty in March during the primaries, also tipped Clinton campaigners off to a potential question at an event in Flint, Mich., according to the latest round of leaked emails.
The revelations come as Democrats continue trying to rebuild trust, especially among supporters of Clinton's primary rival during the primaries, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I) of Vermont, whom party leaders snubbed in favor of the eventual nominee. The favoritism, which Wikileaks unveiled immediately before the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, prompted Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida to resign her post as DNC chair, and it introduced an emails controversy entirely separate from Clinton's use of a private server during her time as US Secretary of State.
"This is an election, and the goal is to come out the winner, not to come out unscathed," Brazile said in a tweet Monday night. "Let's get out the vote."
CNN, which had temporarily suspended Brazile's contract when she became the DNC's interim chair, confirmed Monday it had accepted Brazile's resignation as an on-air commentator on Oct. 14, following the initial round of revelations.
"We are completely uncomfortable with what we have learned about her interactions with the Clinton campaign while she was a CNN contributor," network spokeswoman Lauren Pratapas said in a statement Monday, as The Washington Post reported.
In the newly revealed email, Brazile warns John Podesta and Jennifer Palmieri – staffers for a Clinton campaign subjected to unusual transparency by way of hacked emails – on March 5 about a particular question Clinton would likely be asked in Flint the following day.
"One of the questions directed to HRC tomorrow is from a woman with a rash," Brazile wrote in the subject line.
"Her family has lead poison and she will ask what, if anything, will Hillary do as president to help ppl of Flint," Brazile added in the email body.
It remains unclear to which woman Brazile was referring, though Clinton and Mr. Sanders both fielded questions from Flint residents similar to the one Brazile described. It also remains unclear where Brazile came by the information, though an unnamed CNN employee suggested Brazile could have met the woman during a service trip, as Politico reported, noting alternatively that the source could have been a TV One host who co-moderated the town hall event.
In an interview with The New York Times, Brazile said Monday that CNN had "never, never" shared questions with her in advance. Rather, as a commentator, she always sought out as much information as possible independently.
"I often talk to everybody before an event. I try to learn as much as I can, share as much as I can," she said, emphasizing that her emails had been stolen.
In a series of tweets Monday night, Brazile said Democrats are going to carry on through to Nov. 8.
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump mentioned the controversy during a rally in Warren, Mich., on Monday.
"Who cares about Donna Brazile? Who cares," Mr. Trump said, as the Post reported. "What I care about is: Hillary Clinton gets the questions to a debate – that's a big deal – and then what happens is the media, they never say: Why didn't you turn it in? Why did you use those questions?"
ABC News, where Brazile is also a contributor, has not commented on her status with the network.