Debbie Wasserman-Schultz Must Be Fired- Now!

Oh, and Democratic Party Presidential Nomination Debate Open Thread

Let’s start with an obvious given- Debbie Wasserman-Schultz is the single worst Democratic National Committee Chairman ever. She is directly responsible for the devastating defeats of 2012 and 2014 (What? You say 2012 wasn’t a defeat? Look down ticket dope.). She has supported Republicans, Republicans for goodness sake, against Democrats in her home state of Florida, and has sabotaged liberal and progressive Democrats at every turn in favor of corporatist Third Way/Blue Dog/DLC/New Democrat conservative refugees from the rapidly imploding Republican Party who are merely Democrats of convenience.

A less obvious given, but a given none the less, is that she is totally in the tank for Hillary. She makes barely a pretense of neutrality, her support is naked and blatant.

Thus, while Hillary may say that she’d like more debates and wishes that they were scheduled at more prominent times, Hillary is lying because it is the actions of her sock puppet stooge, Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, that put those rules in place.

The facts of the current Data Breach controversy are that a staffer at the Sanders campaign was working with the DNC database when he noticed that he was able to get access to information that should not have been available to him. After a short exploration to determine the extent of the problem he produced a report which he sent to his boss, Bernie Sanders, who sent it on to the DNC.

He got fired for his trouble.

The fault is entirely the vendor’s, NGP-VAN. They were installing an upgrade that left a security vulnerability. According to them this condition lasted exactly 45 minutes.

Leaving aside the injustice of what happened to Josh Uretsky (and personally I think Bernie should be ashamed), how did the DNC, or more properly Debbie “HillShill” Wasserman-Schultz unilaterally, react?

Why, by cutting off Sanders’ access to his own data of course.

So Bernie sued. Why? Because he was miffed? Well, it would have been a hard blow to his campaign admittedly, but why is that? Because the Democratic National Committee strongly encourages all candidates to use its centralized database and not their own. Candidates only have access to the data they generate (supposedly) but all their data is supposed to go into the DNC’s black hole and so Bernie was cut off from his entire campaign database.

But that’s not why he sued. He has a contract that says that there must be at least 10 days notice before termination of service (presumably so you can back up your own data) that Debbie “HillShill” Wasserman-Schultz completely ignored. Bernie wanted $600,000 a day and an injunction and any court in the land would have had to give it to him, the contract is that clear.

Now the DNC has walked back its position in an implied rebuke to Debbie “HillShill” Wasserman-Schultz (who, as I noted above, must be fired- now!) and the DNC has wisely shut up because they are on the losing side (though there will be continuing “investigations”), and the ball is now being carried by paid Hillary staffers and complict media that Bernie “hacked” her.

If Hillary had any integrity she’d disavow them and apologize but I’m not holding my breath.

(note: Bill Curry is a former gubernatorial candidate in Connecticut and though I do hold his service in the DLC administration of Bill Clinton against him, he seems fairly liberal and I voted for him 3 times- ek)

Debbie Wasserman Schultz must go, and the case Bernie Sanders must make tonight
by Bill Curry, Salon
Saturday, Dec 19, 2015 02:07 PM EST

`Tis nearly the night before Christmas and not a creature is stirring, what with everyone out at a party, multiplex or mall. What better time for a presidential debate?

That at least is the view of DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz and the Clinton campaign, from which she takes her cues. They wanted the fewest possible voters to see the fewest possible debates. So we went from 26 debates in 2008 to six debates in 2016, three of them on weekends. It’s called the Democratic Party, but no one other than Clinton and Schultz had any say in the matter.

On Thursday, the DNC told the press a contractor inadvertently breached a firewall in a software program exposing data files of presidential campaigns and that a Bernie Sanders staffer (Josh Uretsky, with the campaign three months) took the opportunity to sneak a peek at Hillary Clinton’s files. Sanders’ campaign instantly sacked the staffer but Schultz still cut off its access to data, a punishment she seems to have made up on the spot, thus bringing crucial outreach and fundraising efforts to a halt.

On Friday, Sanders’ campaign filed a federal lawsuit alleging breach of contract. It sought a restraining order and money damages that, assuming the facts set forth in the complaint, exceed a million dollars a day. It was a strong case. Uretsky may have behaved unethically but there was no malice aforethought– the forbidden fruit fell in his lap—and from the moment the campaign learned of his possible malfeasance, it acted honorably and swiftly. Schultz, conversely, appears to have acted without color of authority under law, contract or party rule.

The contract required written notice of termination and a 10-day grace period to cure any alleged default. Clearly the DNC was in violation, not Sanders. Because the contract put the onus for securing data on the DNC, it was liable for the breach as well. But the issue was bigger than mere contract law or political dirty tricks. In suspending the vital operations of a presidential campaign, Schultz trespassed on the right of all citizens to free and fair elections. Democrats could ill afford to be seen condoning her actions. Nor could they afford to pay her bills. If she acted without authority she’d be liable for damages, but only if the party was as swift and honorable in dealing with her as Sanders was in dealing with Uretsky.

The DNC Data Breach – It’s The Cover Up!
By Jamie, Crooks and Liars
12/19/15 2:00pm

Yesterday everyone was so focused on who accessed what campaign data in the DNC voter file breach, that we all fell right into a trap by the DNC and Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Honestly I’m kicking myself for not thinking about this, especially after Charlie Pierce asked the best question of the day; “Why Did the DNC Let the Bernie-Hillary Tech Story Leak?” Now I believe I know the answer – to cover-up the real story.

Voter data is the holy grail of politics. It lets campaigns know who to spend time targeting and who to ignore. Both the DNC and RNC has spent tens of millions of dollars curating all this data. So, when news broke that there was a data breach of this data at a national party, damage control had to be quickly done. Enter Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

One thing that really bugged me last night was when Schultz appeared on MSNBC and kept insisting that the Sanders campaign had downloaded this data. This accusation went against the public statement made by the CEO of the DNC’s data vendor, NGP-VAN.

So why was the chair of the DNC out there saying something that purely contradicted what their trusted vendor is saying?

Let’s think about this for a minute. The DNC is courting people to run for office. On top of that, they are also trying to sell the use of their voter database. But suddenly you now have serious questions about the actual security of this system. If a candidate is looking at a heated primary, this would have them asking “can I trust this system I’m paying all this money for to not expose my data to my rivals?” And honestly, they would be right to ask that.

So, back to Charlie Pierce’s question, why would the DNC even leak that this has happened? My guess is that was a last resort tactic. They wanted to try and control the story, distracting from the most important question of the security of their system, and instead focusing on the actions of one of the campaign. There was most likely a fear that after they cut off Sanders access, the Sanders campaign would go public. If that would have happened, then it would have been harder for the DNC to control the story. That control was evident yesterday by the statements Schultz was making.

Depending on how the trial would have gone, this could have really undermined data mining efforts for the DNC for years to come. Suddenly you have campaigns not trusting your system and using their own, of which there are other alternatives out there. Those campaigns go to that other system, and the DNC is suddenly not getting their data updated by that campaign. It quickly starts reducing the effectiveness of the DNC’s actual list. As this continues, that list becomes less valuable and suddenly things like Presidential elections become harder to win.

So while we were all focusing on who did what, with what and how, the DNC was out there employing the great smoke and mirrors of politics. “Question the candidate, not our beloved system!” became the message relayed from the DNC, and that was despite the well known fact that it was that very system that lead to this entire issue.

Put it this way. If your bank suddenly gave all their other customers access to your account, would you continue to use them? I think we know the answer to that.

Yeah, I think we all do.

Debate stars @ 8 pm ET on ABC (hey, at least it’s a real network).

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  1. Bernie holds forth.

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 21:51

    From the Guardian

    O’Malley says America is “an ecosystem”. Then he gets punchy, sketching caricatures of his rivals’ positions.

    He says wages won’t go up by “either trying to replace American capitalism with socialism, nor will we fix it with sort of Wall Street directed crony capitalism. I will have the backbone to take on Wall Street.”

    But he does also go after “the big six banks” and says they should be broken up. He also says the US needs a new Glass Steagall act – Sanders said all of this a moment ago.

    Clinton laughs heartily at O’Malley’s attack, noting that several “hedge fund billionaires” are running attack ads against her because they know she and they do not share an agenda.

    “I have more donations from students or teachers than I do from people associated with Wall Street.”

    Then she says O’Malley “had no trouble” appointing an investment banker for Maryland’s consumer protection bureau, nor for taking Wall Street money earlier in his career. She takes a sidelong shot at Sanders’ record, too, but finally rounds it out with a sally at unity: at least us Democrats aren’t like those money-loving Republicans.

  2. Obamacare failures

  3. Salad from Hil except on Pharma.

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 21:54

    Bernie: Gotta break up the big banks

  4. Also regulation of insurance companies (heh).

  5. Bernie- Single Payer!

  6. Student Debt

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 21:57

    Healthcare: Medicare for all

  7. Me- It ought be treated like regular debt.

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 21:59

    From the candidates on healthcare:

    Insurance companies are overcharging everybody, Clinton says, and the higher prices of the last few years are about market readjustments – not the consequences of Obamacare.

    “It will have effects on the private market,” she says, and in some states prices are so high “because governors there would not extend Medicaid.”

    Sanders, who’s for a single-payer system, says the not only are deductibles rising, but millions of people still don’t have healthcare or can’t afford it. He dodges a question about what sort of taxes Americans would have to pay for a single-payer system, and says it’s ludicrous that the US is the only advanced country without such a system.

    “The drug companies are bribing the United States Congress,” he says.

    The moderator tells him to answer the question, which he only does vaguely, by saying Americans will in fact save money without private insurance costs.

    “They will not be paying any private insurance. Businesses will not be paying any private insurance, the average middle class family will be saving thousands of dollars every year.”

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 22:03

    On Education and Student Loan Debt:

    Sanders calls out the universities who spend huge amounts of money on sports stadiums rather than professors or tuition costs.

    “It is insane to my mind” that hundreds of thousands of young people cannot afford a college education, he says. A speculation tax on Wall Street would raise the money to “not only make public universities free, but also substantially lower interest on student debts”.

    The US needs “radical changes in the funding of higher education,” he says. “We should look at college today the way we looked at high school 60 years ago.”

  8. Hil- there’s no fucking middle class anymore!

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 22:05

    That was the stupidest answer from Hillary about states governing healthcare. nder Medicare for all costs would decrease because bureaucracy would be decreased

  9. Yay Bernie- make my point!

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 22:08

    From The Guardian

    She turns the question around to talk about healthcare, accusing Sanders of sending healthcare costs to the states, and then the middle class.

    Sanders, surprise surprise, takes issue, saying that the key of his proposals is that it does away “with the cost of private insurance and that the middle class will be paying substantially less”.

    Clint: “Your proposals go and send the healthcare systems to the states and my analysis is that you’re going to have to get more taxes out of the middle class.”

    No middle class tax raises, that’s out of the question, she says.

    The moderator tries to wrangle them both to a lower volume. “Now this is getting to be fun,” Sanders says.

    She is absolutely wrong

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 22:11

    Football break: Jets 9 – Cowboys 10

  10. Ferguson Effect

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 22:26

    Race in America

    Clinton says that “trust has been totally lost in a lot of places” even though a lot of police “are briding those divides” and are “acting heroically”, as in shootings in Roseburg, Colorado, and San Bernardino, California.

    “We need to hear the voices of those men and women, and boys and girls, who feel like strangers in their own country.”

    She says that’s how we begin to rebuild trust.

    O’Malley says he’s worked on nothing more than policing, and that as mayor of Baltimore he managed to reduce violent crime greatly.

    (O’Malley was mayor until 2007; in November Baltimore reached its highest homicide rate ever.)

    He says police departments should be required to report excessive force incidents, to rely on data for policing tactics, and require greater oversight.

    Sanders handles the question next, and says the priority should be not only to end institutional racism but “major, major reforms of a broken criminal justice system”.

    First and foremost he says police officers should not be shooting unarmed African Americans. “It means we need to rethink the so-called war on drugs,” he goes on, “which is why I’ve taken marijuana out of the controlled substance act, so that it will not be a federal crime.”

    He says police departments need to move toward community policing – they need to “look like the communities they serve in terms of diversity”.

  11. Libya

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 22:30

    Next question: heroin addiction in America.

    Sanders says this ties back to his plan to reform healthcare wholesale: “Addiction is a disease and not a criminal activity,” Sanders says, “and that means radically changing the way we deal with mental health and addiction.”

    “They should be able to walk in tomorrow and get a variety of treatments that could work for them.”

    Clinton answers the question by talking about how she wants the federal government to give $5bn over several years. She wants fewer opioid prescriptions from medical providers and new law enforcement tactics – “every law enforcers should carry the antidote to overdose”.

    O’Malley again alludes to his experiences in Baltimore, saying he agrees that over-prescribing of opioids. He wants a $12bn federal investment in “local partnerships”, and interventions at hospitals when people come in suffering from opioid overdoses or symptoms.

  12. Talking about Bill

    • TMC on 12/19/2015 at 22:36

    Clinton: US has two roles in Middle East

    Sanders uses the opportunity to repeat his argument that Clinton is for regime changes, unlike himself.

    Clinton again points out that he supported the ouster of Muammar Gaddafi. “I’m not standing here today and saying that Libya is as [stable] as Tunisia,” she says. “I warned about what would happen in Egypt” with quick regime change.

    She says the US has pursued two separate tacts: “one [to] work with the tough men, the dictators for our own benefit, and promote democracy, that’s a rough road for us to walk but I think it’s the right road for us to travel.”

    O’Malley says “we probably let our lust for regime changes get the better” of prioritizing stability in the region.

  13. Closing Statements

  14. Bernie first

  15. O’Malley (who’s he) second

  16. Hillary winds up

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