Donna Brazile, one of the Democrats’ most powerful political operatives in a generation, has opened about Hillary Clinton’s efforts to rig the 2016 Democrat presidential primary.
In her new book, “Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House,” admits the Clinton campaign engaged in “essentially … money laundering,” where state parties were sucked dry to fund her failed presidential effort.
On the same day as Brazile’s bombshell, the DNC has fired its top fundraiser.
The Democratic National Committee dismissed its top fundraiser Thursday after just five months on the job, two Democrats familiar with the move told POLITICO.
Emily Mellencamp Smith, the party’s finance director, was let go in a shakeup of the party’s senior leadership designed to energize the party’s fundraising.
The committee’s slow fundraising has been a serious problem for the party since the 2016 election. Skeptical donors have stayed away from the DNC while giving more to individual candidates and other committees. The party had just $7 million on hand heading into October, according to Federal Election Commission filings.
“We are grateful for Emily Mellencamp Smith’s work to help build a fundraising team that will raise the funds to win in 2017, 2018 and beyond. Emily is going back to consulting and helping elect Democrats in upcoming races, including staying on in a consulting role for the DNC at this time,” Michael Tyler, the DNC’s press secretary said in a statement Thursday.
The shake-up is major because, as with any organizations, funding is crucial to its survival. Firings its top fundraiser could have negative short term effects on the DNC, forcing the already cash-strapped organization to invest even more prudently into local races. As the 2018 midterms roll closer, the DNC can’t afford to make mistakes.
The firing of Mellencamp Smith raises questions of the former DNC operative’s knowledge of the Clinton campaign’s wrongdoings. While Mellencamp Smith was only on the job for five months, it’s likely she was briefed on the DNC’s unethical financial conduct. It’s common for incoming executives to be brought up to speed on previous acts, dealings, transactions and decisions that may impact their role.