民主党人声讨2016年党内初选被做手脚

编辑:给力英语新闻 更新:2017年11月4日 作者:美国之音(VOA News)

前民主党全国委员会(DNC)主席多娜·布拉兹尔
前民主党全国委员会(DNC)主席多娜·布拉兹尔

在前民主党全国委员会主席多娜·布拉兹尔披露希拉克·克林顿竞选团队在党内初选期间针对竞争对手伯尼·桑德斯做了手脚之后,知名民主党人纷纷愤怒声讨。

布拉兹尔即将由《政治》(Politico)出版一部新书。她在新书摘选中声称,克林顿在拿下本党总统候选人提名之前,她的竞选团队与民主党全国委员会(DNC)签署了一份联合募捐协议,同意资助DNC,以换取对该组织运作的控制权。

通常情况下,政党提名的候选人只有在接受提名之后才会行使对党的全国委员会的控制权。但是,根据布拉兹尔的说法,克林顿竞选团队在2015年8月就接过了对DNC的控制权,比她接受党的提名几乎早了一年。

布拉兹尔说,这种安排“不违法,但看起来肯定不符合道德操守。”

她写道:“假如竞争是公平的,某个竞选团队就不会在选民决定由谁做领导人之前就控制党。这不是犯罪行为,但在我看来,它破坏了党的纯洁性。”

DNC名义上是中立组织,在克林顿与桑德斯的党内竞争中负责提供便利。然而,桑德斯的支持者一直声称,民主党明显偏向克林顿。

好几名民主党知名人士立即就布拉兹尔的说法发声。伊丽莎白·沃伦参议员被有线电视新闻网(CNN)问道,她是否相信DNC在初选期间舞弊,坑害桑德斯。沃伦回答了一个字:“是。”

沃伦在选举期间曾积极为克林顿助选。她称书中披露的克林顿之事是民主党人面对的“一个真正问题”。

她说:“当前,我们作为民主党人必须要做的是,必须对这个党实行问责。”

在DNC为帮助克林顿而对初选程序做了手脚的事情曝光后,曾经担任DNC副主席的图茜·加巴德众议员呼吁彻底整改竞选资金法律,并重组全国政党架构。

她星期五发布视频说:“DNC在初选开始前的一年多就秘密挑选了他们的被提名人。这凸显我们的竞选资金法律是多么严重的失灵以及这些法律如何弱化了个人候选人而让政党和特殊利益集团坐大和揽权。”

加伯德说,竞选资金法“让克林顿竞选团队绕过法律对个人竞选捐款的限额,把数以百万计的美元输送给DNC和州党部,在这一过程中控制了DNC。”

布拉兹尔在书中说明了克林顿竞选团队如何把DNC当作“募款清算所”,以规避选举资金法。按照法律,个人最多只能为一个总统竞选团队直接捐款2700美元,但是对州党部和党的全国委员会的限额就要高得多。

按照克林顿与DNC签署的联合募捐协议,个人可以写一张353,400美元的支票,捐给联合账户。这笔钱首先存入州党部的账户,然后转回全国委员会,再转给克林顿。

布拉兹尔写道:“战场州的钱通常留在那个州,但是所有其它州都把那笔钱直接输送给DNC,DNC很快把钱转到布鲁克林。”克林顿竞选阵营的总部在纽约布鲁克林。

根据布拉兹尔的说法,前总统奥巴马和前民主党全国委员会主席黛比·沃瑟曼·舒尔兹在2012年的总统选举后,让DNC欠下了2400万美元的债。债台高筑的DNC随后与克林顿的竞选团队签下了那份“不符合道德操守”的协议。

布拉兹尔解释了为什么DNC会欠这么多的债。她写道:“党主席通常会在两次总统竞选之间的间歇期裁减人员,但是黛比决定不那样做。她把很多咨询顾问继续留在DNC的工资单上,奥巴马的咨询顾问也从DNC拿钱。”

布拉兹尔说,克林顿的竞选团队偿还了奥巴马竞选团队遗留的债务,作为回报,民主党全国委员会(DNC)同意让克林顿竞选团队“控制党的财务、战略和所有募集到的资金” 。

布拉兹尔在前任沃瑟曼·舒尔兹辞职后接过了DNC主席职务。维基揭秘公布的电邮似乎显示舒尔兹在协调党内努力帮助克林顿竞选后,她被迫辞去了党主席职务。

Democrats Cry Foul Over 'Rigged' Primary Election

Prominent Democrats are expressing outrage over revelations from former Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Donna Brazile that Hillary Clinton's campaign rigged the primary election against rival Bernie Sanders.

Brazile, in an excerpt from her upcoming book Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House, claims that prior to securing the party's nomination, Clinton, through a joint fundraising agreement signed with the DNC, agreed to finance the DNC in exchange for power over the organization's operations.

Normally, a nominee wouldn't exert control over the national party apparatus until after accepting the nomination. According to Brazile, though, the Clinton camp took control of DNC operations in August 2015, nearly a year before Clinton accepted the nomination.

Brazile said the arrangement was "not illegal, but it sure looked unethical."

"If the fight had been fair, one campaign would not have control of the party before the voters had decided which one they wanted to lead. This was not a criminal act, but as I saw it, it compromised the party's integrity," she wrote.

The DNC is, ostensibly, a neutral organization meant to facilitate the contest between Clinton and Sanders, though Sanders supporters had long claimed the party showed a clear preference for Clinton.

Several prominent Democrats were quick to pounce on Brazile's claims. Senator Elizabeth Warren, when asked by CNN if she believes the DNC rigged the primary contest against Sanders, said one word: "Yes."

Warren, who campaigned heavily for Clinton during the election, called the Clinton revelations "a real problem" for Democrats.

"What we've got to do as Democrats now is, we've got to hold this party accountable," she said.

Representative Tulsi Gabbard, who previously served as the DNC vice-chairwoman, called for a complete overhaul of campaign finance laws and a restructuring of the national party in response to the revelations the DNC rigged the nomination process in favor of Clinton.

"The DNC secretly chose their nominee over a year before the primary elections even occurred. This shines a light on how deeply broken our campaign finance laws are, and how they've weakened individual candidates while strengthening and empowering political parties and special interests," Gabbard says in a video released Friday.

Gabbard said campaign finance laws "allowed the Clinton campaign to bypass individual campaign contribution limits by funneling millions of dollars through the DNC and state parties — taking control of the DNC in the process."

Brazile laid out in her book, published by Politico, how the Clinton campaign used the DNC as "a fund-raising clearinghouse" in order to skirt election finance laws. Individuals are allowed to contribute a maximum of $2,700 directly to a presidential campaign, but the limits for state parties and the national committee are a lot higher.

Under the joint fundraising agreement Clinton signed with the DNC, individuals could write a check for $353,400 to the joint account. The money would first be deposited in state party accounts, before being transferred back to the DNC, and on to Clinton.

"Money in the battleground states usually stayed in that state, but all the other states funneled that money directly to the DNC, which quickly transferred the money to Brooklyn," Brazile wrote, referencing the Clinton campaign headquarters in New York.

Ties to Obama

According to Brazile, former President Barack Obama and former DNC Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz left the DNC $24 million in debt following the 2012 presidential election, which led to the "unethical" agreement with the Clinton campaign.

"What had happened?" Brazile wrote. "The party chair usually shrinks the staff between presidential election campaigns, but Debbie had chosen not to do that. She had stuck lots of consultants on the DNC payroll, and Obama's consultants were being financed by the DNC, too."

The Clinton campaign cleared up the pre-existing debt left behind by the Obama campaign and, in return, the DNC agreed to let the Clinton campaign "control the party's finances, strategy, and all the money raised," Brazile said.

Brazile took over as chairwoman of the DNC when her predecessor, Wasserman Schultz, was forced to resign after emails released by WikiLeaks appeared to show her coordinating party efforts with the Clinton campaign.