CNN severs ties with Donna Brazile after emails show debate questions given to Hillary Clinton in advance
CNN has severed ties with Donna Brazile, a paid commentator, after leaked emails revealed she shared debate questions with Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
It is thought Brazile, a top official with the Democratic National Committee, shared at least two questions with Clinton's campaign in advance of CNN-hosted Democratic debates.
Brazile's actions were uncovered in the John Podesta leaked emails released by WikiLeaks.
"CNN never gave Brazile access to any questions, prep material, attendee list, background information or meetings in advance of a town hall or debate. We are completely uncomfortable with what we have learned about her interactions with the Clinton campaign while she was a CNN contributor," a CNN spokesperson said in a statement.
The network said the move happened on October 14, after WikiLeaks released the Podesta emails that showed her passing questions to the campaign.
An email titled: "From time to time I get the questions in advance," informed Clinton about a potential question about the death penalty, with Brazile adding: "I'll send a few more. Though some questions Roland submitted."
"Roland" is thought to be television host Roland Martin, who co-moderated the March 13 town hall event.
Politico quoted Martin as saying he didn’t "believe" he had shared it with Brazile.
A new Wikileaks release showed that passing of questions to the campaign appeared to be part of pattern. It is thought that this may have prompted CNN to distance itself from Brazile.
On March 5 this year, Brazile wrote an email to Clinton's campaign manager John Podesta titled: "One of the questions directed to HRC tomorrow is from a woman with a rash."
That email was regarding a question to be asked during the next day's primary town hall debate in Flint, Michigan. Flint has suffered from a water contamination crisis.
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"Her family has lead poison and she will ask what, if anything, will Hillary do as president to help the ppl of Flint. Folks, I did a service project today. It's so tragic. And what's worse, some homes have not been tested and it's important to encourage seniors to also get tested," the email read.
Earlier in October Brazile denied any wrongdoing. "I never had access to questions and would never have shared them with the candidates if I did," she wrote in a statement.
She tweeted on Monday: "Thank you @CNN. Honored to be a Democratic Strategist and commentator on the network. Godspeed to all my former colleagues.— Donna Brazile "
Brazile took over from Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who resigned from the post after the DNC email leak showed that she and her team allegedly attempted to smear former democratic rival Bernie Sanders.
Thank you @CNN. Honored to be a Democratic Strategist and commentator on the network. Godspeed to all my former colleagues.— Donna Brazile (@donnabrazile) October 31, 2016
Belfast Telegraph Digital