- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 2, 2016

In a massive shakeup of its top leadership, the Democratic National Committee announced Tuesday the departures of its chief executive officer, chief financial officer, and communications director, in the wake of an embarrassing email hack that already prompted the resignation of the DNC chair.

Amy Dacey, the DNC’s CEO, Brad Marshall, its CFO, and top spokesman Luis Miranda are all leaving the organization as the party looks forward to the general election contest between Hillary Clinton, its presidential nominee, and GOP nominee Donald Trump.

“This election is the most important of my lifetime, and the DNC will continue to recruit top talent to help lead the fight to elect Hillary Clinton and Democrats across the country,” said interim DNC chairwoman Donna Brazile.

The departures come on the heels of Wikileaks’ release of thousands of internal DNC emails right before the start of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.

One of the emails showed Mr. Marshall musing about ways that Sen. Bernard Sanders’ religion could be used against him. Mr. Miranda’s and Ms. Dacey’s addresses were both on the email chain. Mr. Marshall later apologized, saying the comments don’t reflect either his beliefs or the DNC’s.

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz resigned as DNC chair in the wake of the release of the emails, and Ms. Brazile, a longtime party strategist, was named as the interim chair.

Ms. Brazile offered praise for Ms. Dacey, Mr. Marshall and Mr. Miranda, and noted that Mr. Marshall has worked for the DNC for more than 20 years.

Ms. Brazile said Tom McMahon, a past DNC executive director, will lead the organization’s transition team “to help position the party for the general election and prepare for the permanent party chair.”

Brandon Davis, who came aboard in June, will continue in his role as chief of staff and will oversee “all aspects” of the committee’s general election efforts, the party said.

Ms. Brazile also announced that Democratic strategist Doug Thornell will serve as a senior adviser on a temporary basis.

Democrats and Mrs. Clinton’s campaign have pointed fingers at Russia as having some sort of involvement in the hack, while the Trump campaign has dismissed that notion.

President Obama said Tuesday that Moscow could face “certain proportional penalties” if the U.S. confirms that Russia was behind the hacking.

“I don’t want to get out ahead of the legal evidence and facts that we may have in order to make those kinds of decisions,” Mr. Obama said.

The president said the episode isn’t likely to affect the already difficult relationship between the U.S. and Russia.

“If, in fact, Russia engaged in this activity, it’s just one on a long list of issues that me and Mr. Putin talk about and that I’ve got a real problem with,” he said of Russian President Vladimir Putin. “I think we’ve already got a lot of differences with Russia on a whole bunch of issues.”

• Dave Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

• David Sherfinski can be reached at dsherfinski@washingtontimes.com.

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