Democrat official considered replacing Hillary Clinton with Joe Biden
Democrat official considered replacing Hillary Clinton, the former head of the Democratic National Committee says she considered initiating effort to replace Hillary Clinton as the party’s presidential nominee with then vice-president Joe Biden.
Donna Brazile makes the revelation in a memoir being released on Tuesday entitled Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House.
Brazile writes that she considered initiating Clinton’s removal after she collapsed while leaving a 9/11 memorial service in New York City. Clinton later acknowledged she was suffering from pneumonia.
But Brazile says the larger issue was that her campaign was “anemic” and had taken on “the odor of failure”.
After considering a dozen combinations to replace Clinton and her running mate, Tim Kaine from Virginia, Brazile writes that she settled on Biden and Cory Booker of New Jersey as those with the best chance of defeating Trump.
Ultimately, the former DNC head says, “I thought of Hillary, and all the women in the country who were so proud of and excited about her. I could not do this to them.”
It was unclear whether Biden was willing to step into the race or even whether he discussed the idea with Brazile. A spokesman for the former vice-president did not respond to a request for comment on Saturday.
Brazile writes that on 12 September 2016, the day after Clinton collapsed, Biden’s chief of staff called saying the vice-president wanted to speak with her and that her thought at the time was “Gee, I wonder what he wanted to talk to me about?”
As for Brazile’s powers to determine the party’s candidate, she writes that as party chair she would oversee the process of replacing a nominee who became disabled.
Brazile writes she believed a joint fundraising agreement signed between Clinton and the DNC “looked unethical” and she felt Clinton had too much influence on the party during a competitive Democratic primary with rival Bernie Sanders.
During the nomination process for the 2016 election Democrats argued among themselves over whether Clinton was being given an unfair advantage over Sanders, a Vermont independent who sought the party’s nomination with the backing of its more liberal members.
On Saturday, DNC Chairman Tom Perez issued a statement saying he and the DNC leadership were committed to ensuring the nomination process in 2020 will be “unquestionably fair and transparent”.
Among the reforms he said he developed after listening to Democrats across the party spectrum was ensuring that “no candidate participating in our presidential nominating process gains any unfair advantage — real or perceived — during our primary season”. He also said the debate schedule would be decided in advance rather than negotiated after all candidates had entered the race.
Perez also pledged to ensure all joint fundraising agreements would be transparent, including the new Democratic Grassroots Victory Fund agreements developed with the 50 state parties.