Saturday, December 19, 2015

Sanders Campaign Steals Data From The Clinton Campaign

The Sanders and Clinton campaigns both make use of the database provided by the Democratic National Committee (DNC). But they do not share information with each other. There is a firewall separating the information collected by the two campaigns, and both campaigns have agreed to abide by that separation.

Unfortunately, one campaign has now violated that trust.

That firewall was down for a short time recently, and realizing they could now have access to the Clinton campaign data, four Sanders staffers jumped on the unethical opportunity and ran at least 25 searches of the Clinton data. They built lists and saved them to their own accounts. This was not just some volunteers. The effort was led by Sanders campaign political data director Josh Uretsky.

The DNC data base provider realized what was happening after about 25 minutes, and deleted the information collected in accounts they knew about. The DNC has now suspended the Sanders campaign's access to the database until an audit can be done to insure they possess no data they should not have. The Sanders campaign has fired Uretsky, but isn't cooperating with the audit.

Instead, they have gone to court to have their access returned, and say the denial of access is just the DNC trying to give Clinton an advantage in the primary election. That is ridiculous. The DNC has been very careful to stay out of the campaign, and if it had been the Clinton campaign stealing data, they would have denied them access for an audit.

This was nothing short of theft, and it was done by only one campaign -- the Sanders campaign. It cannot be fixed by blustery rhetoric or accusations. They need to apologize and give the DNC what it needs to clear up the situation and restore access.

Sanders has bragged since getting into the presidential race that he plans to run the most ethical campaign of any candidate of any party. Sadly, it looks like some of his employees don't have that same high ethical standard. They seem to think that anything goes as long as they think it will help their candidate. I can understand their frustration over Sanders being unable to turn the race into a real contest, but frustration doesn't justify theft or dirty tricks -- and their unethical actions tend to smear the entire campaign effort.

This mess will undoubtably come up in tonight's Democratic debate. I hope Sanders doesn't try to play it off as the DNC unfairly trying to help Clinton. If he does, I'll lose a lot of the immense respect I have for him.

(The caricatures above of Sanders and Clinton are from DonkeyHotey.)


  1. Non-TV watchers can skip this, but I do spend a lot of time watching 'the box' and the dramas, and one of my regular shows has been THE GOOD WIFE -- which started out as a serious show about politics, the law, and the ethical ambiguities involved in both. Sadly, by now it has become a bumbling farce which can only be taken seriously if you can consciously ignore the contradictions between various pieces of the same episode. (Right now, Gov. Peter Florrick, who started out 'running for VP' but is now running against Hillary for real, is very worried about the possibility that his wife -- they are separated but this is not supposed to be known by the voters -- might be sleeping with her investigator -- but isn't even bothered by the fact that (in the last two shows) she has defended a FB clone from itself putting up a series of overlays to city maps detailing the 'safe,' 'questionable' and 'dangerous' neighborhoods, based mostly on racial composition. (In reality, if a social media member put up similar maps and the company didn't take them down at once, that alone would be the biggest Internet scandal in years. No company would put up such maps itself, but 'ChumHum' did, and Alicia was right there defending it.) This was followed by a case where she defended a doctor accused of conspiracy to commit rape, based on his posting detailed plans on an internet site, plans that were fantasies, it turns out, but which used a real person, a patient of the doctor, as the subject of the rape.
    The relevance -- admittedly minor -- is that Florrick too, promised the 'most ethical administration in the history of Illinois' -- and then tried to appoint his wife's employer, whose partner had almost been disbarred for mishandling client money, and who had been the lawyer -- for his 'legitimate businesses' -- of the biggest heroin dealer in Chicago.
    "I'll run the most ethical...' has, far too often, been a red flag to look closely at the speaker's actions.

  2. The DNC has been very careful to stay out of the campaign - I find this comment to be of a somewhat dubious nature.

  3. Really? Repeating DNC talking points verbatim?

    1. Those are my own beliefs. I do my own thinking.


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