The Deeper Implications of Wasserman Schultz Resigning as DNC Chair

By: Anne M. Cizmar, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Political Science for EKU Online

After a controversial tenure as chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), Debbie Wasserman Schultz announced her resignation as DNC chair just before the Democratic Convention opened in Philadelphia last week. Her resignation was spurred by emails released on WikiLeaks that suggest the DNC was opposed to the Sanders’ campaign during the primary season, and worked to prevent his nomination.

The real implication of Wasserman Schultz’s resignation was the renewed anger among Sanders’ supporters coming into the Democratic Convention. The timing of the email leak could not be worse for Democrats. The Democratic Party certainly hoped to unify the party at the convention, winning over Sanders’ supporters and others to Hillary Clinton’s nomination. Rather than making a clean break and looking forward to the general election in November, the email leaks and subsequent Wasserman Schultz resignation have ignited protests among Sanders’ supporters again. This email leak also follows Clinton’s announcement of Tim Kaine as her running mate for November, which already enflamed some Sanders’ supporters and progressives in the Democratic Party as his is a very moderate Democrat.

This development may also influence Wasserman Schultz’s own re-election chances. She currently serves as the representative for Florida’s 23rd congressional district, and is facing a primary opponent to retain her seat in the House of Representatives. Wasserman Schultz is being challenged by Tim Canova—who is endorsed by Bernie Sanders. Her resignation amid the email scandal may spell trouble for her own re-election bid.

Published on August 01, 2016