Just a day before the 2016 Democratic National Convention, Democratic National Committee Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz said that she will resign her position after the convention. Donna Brazile, the veteran Democratic operative and well-known television commentator, will serve as interim chair.
Wasserman Schultz has been forced to step aside after a leak of internal DNC emails showed officials actively favoring Hillary Clinton during the presidential primary and plotting against Clinton’s rival, Bernie Sanders.
The publication of 20,000 DNC emails by Wikileaks over the weekend made it immediately clear that Schultz's five-year tenure was in peril. The Wikileaks publication exposed what many Sanders supporters had feared all along: That the party apparatus was working to tilt the primary scales in favor of Clinton.
The Democratic Party was officially supposed to maintain a neutral stance throughout the primary, and Wasserman Schultz failed to appear credibly balanced. She got into bitter arguments with the Sanders camp about obscure Nevada caucus rules, made a mess of the debate schedule, fought over ballot access data, and may have helped Clinton skirt the campaign finance rules.
In an official statement to the press, Hillary Clinton accepted Wasserman Schultz’s resignation but still struck a very supportive tone about her and her future role in politics: “I want to thank my longtime friend Debbie Wasserman Schultz for her leadership of the Democratic National Committee over the past five years. I am grateful to Debbie for getting the Democratic Party to this year's historic convention in Philadelphia, and I know that this week's events will be a success thanks to her hard work and leadership.”
President Obama also issued a statement: “For the last eight years, Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz has had my back. This afternoon, I called her to let her know that I am grateful. Her leadership of the DNC has meant that we had someone who brought Democrats together not just for my re-election campaign, but for accomplishing the shared goals we have had for our country.”