Time for Debbie Wasserman Schultz to go

The number of calls for the chair of the Democratic National Committee Debbie Wasserman Schultz to resign has been steadily increasing. The impetus has come from the way that, rather than being scrupulously neutral in the Democratic primary contests, she has been perceived as stacking the deck in favor of her preferred candidate Hillary Clinton. In addition, she is seen as having aggravated tensions between the Clinton and Bernie Sanders camps rather than smoothing them over.

But the problems with her tenure are much deeper than this. She has long been seen as a hack neoliberal Democratic politician who is a friend of big money interests that is emblematic of crony capitalism, recruiting and supporting Democratic candidates for office who are often the least progressive of those on offer. She was proposed for this office in 2011 by president Barack Obama, which says a lot about him too, none of which is complimentary.

Bill Moyers and Michael Winship make the case for why Wasserman Schultz must go.

As we recently wrote, “… She embodies the tactics that have eroded the ability of Democrats to once again be the party of the working class. As Democratic National Committee chair she has opened the floodgates for Big Money, brought lobbyists into the inner circle and oiled all the moving parts of the revolving door that twirls between government service and cushy jobs in the world of corporate influence.”

So, too, has her abolition of the restraints that had been placed on corporate lobbyists and big money — now they can write checks bankrolling what doubtless will be swank and profligate parties during this summer’s Democratic National Convention. At The Intercept, Lee Fang and Zaid Jilani report that a number of the members of the Philadelphia host committee “are actively working to undermine progressive policies achieved by President Barack Obama, including health care reform and net neutrality. Some… are hardly even Democratic Party stalwarts, given that many have donated and raised thousands of dollars for Republican presidential and congressional candidates this cycle.”

Rep. Wasserman Schultz is facing a primary challenge for the first time this year, her opponent a law professor, activist and progressive Sanders supporter named Tim Canova. But the primary’s not until late August, long after the Democratic National Convention. Unless she steps down now or Hillary Clinton has her removed, Philadelphia will be dominated by someone who represents everything that has gone wrong with the Democratic Party and Washington.

It is well past time for her to go though it is highly unlikely that the party will make a change before the election.


  1. John Smith says

    Watch as she becomes the VP nominee. DWS was co-chair of the Clinton campaign 2008. Of course she’s biased as they come. Note DWS doesn’t care about voter rights -- she actually voted to gut them. When Clinton benefited from voting rights weakened by congress and the Supreme Court, how exactly will she try to restore it? Trump is more likely to restore them -- though he probably won’t either.

  2. says

    But the problems with her tenure are much deeper than this. She has long been seen as a hack neoliberal Democratic politician who is a friend of big money interests that is emblematic of crony capitalism, recruiting and supporting Democratic candidates for office who are often the least progressive of those on offer.

    Sounds like those may be her true beliefs -- if she’s such a fan of Hillary, it could be they’re kindred hack neoliberal friends of big money.

  3. lorn says

    Debbie Wasserman Schultz is doing exactly what she is supposed to be doing. She is looking after the best interests of the Democratic party, as she, and the committees see those interests. If that doesn’t suit Sanders he is free to start his own party. He won’t do that. The deadlines to be put on the ballot have long ago passed in many major states. Write-ins never seem to go very far.

    Bernie has never done much to help Democrats, their parties or any other candidates to win election or advance their cause. While he is perfectly willing to used Democratic party resources and media platforms to advance his own cause he doesn’t give anything back. He may have attracted more people to the party, or not. Depends of how you figure. The biggest Bernie supporter on my block is also so frequently toasted that he admits that showing up to vote is going to be a challenge. He said he is registered but only after I mentioned that he had to be registered to vote. I have to be … like registered … really … Oh yea … I’m like sooooo totally registered. For him, Bernie is a lifestyle choice. And a good way of picking up girls. Is he representative? I hope not.

    How many of them understand that politics isn’t about getting one person into any one office is unknown. How many will vote, how many are even registered, are both unknown to me. How many will roll out of bed to vote, after picking up that hot chick who was sooooo jazzed with pre-election excitement, is also unknown. I can’t say I was much better when I was his age. Smoked a lot of weed in my day. But I was registered, did vote, knew how politics worked, and was always skeptical of the cult of personality. Based on that, I tried to stop Reagan in the primary.

    Now I’m old. I voted the Democratic ticket when the word liberal was almost universally considered an insult. I gritted my teeth while the crew chief on the job site played two hours of Rush Limbaugh at high volume every day . I gave money when money was tight to support the Democrats. I saw what they did to Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea. Character assassination doesn’t begin to describe the layers of lies and plots within plots. Most of Bernie supporter’s talking points have their roots in GOP hatchet jobs and rumors repeated over thirty years. So long ago that they have become political elevator music. You hum along without even realizing you are doing it.

    Goebels could only dream of the propaganda machine used to slander them. So effective was the effort that these talking points bubble up in the minds of Bernie supporters digging around to find a way to make their man look good. They can’t really talk about accomplishments. So all they have left is insult and insinuation, and those nasty little rumors from three decades ago. No need too offer any attribution. But I remember when all those lies were mere whispered rumors, or shouted accusations from Rush, going around for the first time.

    Sad that they validate the lies by reusing them. Bernie may indeed be the personification of ideological purity (He could afford to be pure in the protected liberal enclave of Vermont) but his supporters are not.

  4. doublereed says


    Dude, what you doing here? I’m sorry, but if you think people support Sanders because of a cult of personality and to pick up chicks, then seriously go somewhere else. You’re just being a douchebag at this point.

    Trump is a cult of personality. Where he can do anything and his audience excuses it. That’s what that means. The progressive movement does have other people other than Sanders, like Elizabeth Warren, Patrick Leahy, Alan Grayson. And if Sanders was caught taking billions from Wall Street, the movement would drop his ass and move on to the next progressive voice. We want progressive people in office rather than crooks like Debbie Wasserman Schultz. These conservatives are people that completely undermine the Democratic Party at every turn by supporting right wing policies. Republican-lite is not a platform. People might as well vote for an actual republican. It’s the reason why Democrats constantly play defense, because they refuse to actually support their own platform.

    And you talk about Clinton with other candidates??? You do realize nearly all the money she raised for other candidates was funneled back directly into her campaign, right? And not even her general Democratic campaign, but her primary against Sanders. Again, if anything, this undermines the Democratic party, does not support it.

  5. lorn says

    “then seriously go somewhere else”

    Fascinating … deny a cult of personality but, when someone fails to worship at the altar of Bernie, it is suggested they leave. For a movement hoping to make inroads in the not-bean-bag world of politics that strikes me as mighty touchy.

    Bernie has a vision and a handy ‘all the kids are doing it’ label but he is mighty light on accomplishments. Which is why his campaign is thin skinned and focused on polishing his image by bringing down Clinton’s. Ironically this aligns quite well with GOP efforts to win by raising her negatives. Funny how Progressives so easily adopt the tactics and even the specific talking points of the system that they hate, and use them on their once removed closest allies. The heresy of contradiction over minor points is always punished more strongly than major opposition over fundamentals. Progressives, a sweet vision for the future but long knives and parochial viciousness now. I fully expect to see it again when under pressure. Once you obtain weapon there is an almost irresistible urge to use it.

    It is clear who the GOP fears most simply by noting how they focus their media power and coordinated multi-level noise machine, otherwise known as The Mighty Wurlitzer, to bring down Clinton. Bernie has never had The Mighty Wurlitzer pointed directly at him. Raise his negatives a few points and he will no longer be able to walk on water.

    Of course this whole thing with the DNC is emblematic of his weakness. He hits a bump and his supporters lay down a hail of rhetorical covering fire into the nearest tree line out of nervousness. That’s okay. Clinton, and her supporters have been under fire and constant bombardment by The Mighty Wurlitzer for thirty years.

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