The Democratic National Committee (DNC) has been hit with a lawsuit on behalf of donors to the Sanders campaign, among others.
The primary claim is one of fraud, alleging that by favouring Clinton in the primaries, the DNC and its former Chairwoman, Debbie Wasserman Schultz deprived voters of having their legitimate choice stand a chance in the Election.
Lawsuit also alleges that the DNC breached its fiduciary duties towards registered democrats.
Cable and network television in the US has given little coverage to the lawsuit and its proceedings.
The lawyer who filed the suit has alleged intimidation by persons either paid by, or loyal to, the DNC.
The Democratic National Committee (DNC) is currently being confronted with a class action lawsuit accusing it of exercising bias and preferring Hillary to Sanders during the 2016 primary.
Legal expert Jared Beck filed a lawsuit in Florida in June 2016, following the publication of leaked documents, that bespoke of DNC’s deliberation undermining Bernie Sanders.
The lawsuit has been filed on the behalf of the residents of 45 states against the DNC in general and former Chairwoman, Debbie Wasserman Schultz in particular for violating Article 5, Section 4 of DNC’s charter. There are three plaintiffs appended to this lawsuit – donors to DNC, donors to the Bernie Sander’ campaign, and all registered Democrats.
Three prominent legal claims have been cited in this lawsuit;
- A claim of fraud has been made against the DNC and Ms. Schultz—based on the revelations from the Guccifer 2.0 documents purportedly taken from the DNC’s own computer network. The Guccifer 2.0 documents include internal memos in which the DNC broke legally binding neutrality agreements in the Democratic primaries by strategizing to make Hillary Clinton the nominee before a single vote was cast. As a corollary to the claim of fraud, the lawsuit also claims that the actions constitute negligent misrepresentation,
- The lawsuit alleges that the DNC and Ms. Schultz deceived the public and all democrats in claiming that the Committeewas neutral during the Democratic primaries, even going so far as to accuse Senator Sanders of being unable to accept democratic decisions, notwithstanding the overwhelming evidence suggesting otherwise. Through this behaviour, the DNC broke its fiduciary duties during the Democratic primaries to members of the Democratic Party by not holding a fair election process.
- The plaintiffs are also seeking damages and compensation since hackers broke into the DNC’s networks, potentially compromising their personal information and they attribute this to negligence in failing to protect donor information.
As compensation, the lawsuit is seeking retribution of all monetary donations by the Committee to all those who contributed to Senator Sanders’ campaign.
Beck has firmly refuted all allegations that this is a roundabout way of venting their frustration at Senator Sanders’ loss to Ms. Clinton”This lawsuit has nothing to do with politics or political disagreements within the DNC. This case should concern everyone because it goes to the heart of the country’s democratic institutions,” Mr. Beck has stated in interviews.
At the hearing on 25th April, the DNC representative Bruce Spiva presented their line. His argument amounted to claiming that the DNC could have voluntarily decided go into back rooms like they used to and smoke cigars and pick the candidate that way. Essentially, the thrust of his argument posited that since the Democratic Party was a private organisation and the charter, it’s an internal matter and hence the charter was not legally enforceable. Spiva further added that while the DNC could have decided to simply pick their choice over a meeting, they didn’t, but was at pains to point out that if they had it would have been well within their rights to do so. On this basis, Spiva has argued that Mr. Sanders’ supporters, and those who filed the lawsuit had no case. He claimed that, on record which the DNC has in its possession, the ‘Bernie camp’ knew that the DNC could choose to favour a candidate, and that the voters had no plausible reasons to expect them to maintain free and fair elections.
Unsurprisingly, the entire case has received very little attention in mainstream cable tv in the US media and reportage on this matter has been highly satisfactory. Reasons for this blackout are inexplicable, at least in the perception of the complainants. But other observers cite the intra-party nature of the situation to be the reason for the lawsuit not gaining media attention, since the internal matters of the party are its own prerogative. However, it does seem clear that the mainstream media has deliberately overlooked the whole story since it broke. Further complicating the situation and muddying the waters have been reports of calls of to Beck’s house, and threats of intimidation. “Our co-counsel Cullin O’Brien now getting anonymous callers, talking about Cullin’s family and how federal prosecutor #BerantonWhisenant washed up dead on Hollywood Beach, same county as Cullin.”, read Beck’s Facebook status.