carelessness was exposed on July 22, 2016, when WikiLeaks published
19,000 Democratic National Committee e-mails. The hacked messages,
acknowledged as authentic by the DNC, showed a concerted, official
effort to denigrate Bernie Sanders and derail his campaign.3
The Washington Post cited an example that is particularly disgusting: "On May 5, DNC officials appeared to conspire to raise Sanders' faith as an issue...'It might make no difference, but for KY and WVA can we get someone to ask his belief. Does he believe in a God...I think I read he is an atheist."4 This dirty trick was wrong in many ways and exposed rot at the top of the party.
"Basically, all of these examples [the most damaging emails]," the Post article summarizes, "came late in the primary—after Hillary Clinton was clearly headed for victory—but they belie the national party committee's stated neutrality in the race even at that late stage."5
The committee apologized untruthfully: "On behalf of everyone at the DNC, we want to offer a deep and sincere apology to Senator Sanders, his supporters, and the entire Democratic Party for the inexcusable remarks made over email. These comments do not reflect the values of the DNC or our steadfast commitment to neutrality during the nominating process..."
However, they did reflect the values of the DNS, at that time, and clearly, high-level DNC staffers' "steadfast commitment" was to securing the nomination for the former first lady who undoubtedly was viewed as more likely to beat the Republican candidate. Of course the tune changed when they were caught.
How could this have happened? Clinton—the strongest candidate by far—should have seen it coming and taken steps to prevent it. For example, she could have scheduled a meeting with DNC executive staff, including former Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, and invited the press: "Whatever this committee does," she might have said, "I want it to treat Bernie Sanders' candidacy and mine exactly the same. Exactly the same! I want to win because my ideas are better, my experience superior, and my appeal to voters greater. Don't let favoritism color your interactions with, work for, or official comments about either of us." But she didn't...
When the story broke it made her look terrible even though she might not have had anything to do with the DNC's bias. Ultimately, it further incensed many of Sanders' supporters who saw her, in the sixties sense, as "part of the problem" and decided to vote for another candidate or not vote.
Why didn't she make it clear to the DNC that she only wanted victory if fairly and squarely won? Ego? Win at most costs? Carelessness?
Meanwhile another terrible story was developing involving long-time Clinton aide Huma Abedin and her bewilderingly irresponsible husband Anthony Weiner. In May 2011, when he was a congressman from New York, reporters obtained tweets Weiner had sent to a woman following him on Twitter. The messages featured images of his genitals.
Soon Weiner admitted sending exhibitionistic photographs to other women, political pressure grew quickly, and he resigned from Congress in June 2011. Clinton, who knew all too well the crazy sexual weaknesses of husbands didn't blame Huma and kept her on as a close aide. That's admirable, if foolhardy, loyalty...
Two years later, while embroiled in a campaign to become mayor of New York, Weiner again was caught sending erotic selfies to a woman, this time under the asinine alias Carlos Danger. Certainly this should have been the final straw for Clinton: "Huma, you're wonderful," she might have began, "but your husband is a scandalous jerk I can no longer be associated with, given my political objectives. Thank you for your excellent service, but I'll need to find a new close aide." (Averdin could have continued working for the Clinton campaign in some capacity.) But she didn't.
About a month after the convention that made Clinton the Democractic presidential candidate, Weiner sexts to another female were revealed. Abedin separated from him at last, but things got much worse. In late September, a story in the UK's Daily Mail reported a 15-year-old girl received some of his erotic messages. FBI Director James B. Comey mailed a letter to Congress October 28, 2016 announcing: "In connection with an unrelated case, the FBI has learned of the existence of e-mails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation [of Hillary Clinton's personal e-mail server while she was secretary of state].
The "unrelated case" was the bureau's inquiry into Weiner's inappropriate messages to a juvenile; the same laptop used for that illicit activity the FBI found contained a large number of Clinton's state department e-mails. Comey's letter included the suspense-building: "...the FBI cannot yet assess whether or not this material may be significant, and I cannot predict how long it will take us to complete this additional work..."