- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 8, 2017

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

It looks as though Vermont Sen. Bernard Sanders may be holding a grudge against the Democratic National Committee. They did, after all, try to rig the presidential primary contest against him.

According to a report in the liberal blog Mother Jones, the DNC is desperate to get its hands on Mr. Sanders’ presidential email list, so it can raise funds off it. However, his team is refusing to let it go.

“As the Democratic Party struggles to regain its footing following its disastrous November election, one vestige of the 2016 campaign has taken on much importance: Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ email list,” Mother Jones reports. “Sanders, who raised $218 million online from a record 2.8 million donors, rewrote the rules of email fundraising during his campaign by relentlessly courting small-dollar contributors. For many of those donors, Sanders was the first Democratic presidential candidate they had supported — or the first politician they had ever helped.”

So naturally, the DNC wants the names and numbers of the donors, so they, too, can tap them for donations.

Rep. Keith Ellison, who Mr. Sanders has endorsed as chairman of the DNC, pledged to obtain the list for the party if he wins, Mother Jones reported.

“We’re gonna call on everybody to give all the resources they have,” Mr. Ellison said at a January DNC debate. “We’re in an emergency situation.”

His primary challenger, former Labor Secretary Tom Perez, told The Huffington Post in December that he wants “to learn from Senator Sanders about how he did it.”

But so far, the Sanders team has shown no interest in sharing. Mr. Sanders controls the list through his Senate campaign and his political nonprofit, Our Revolution.

“Our Revolution won’t be giving over the list,” the group’s president, Jeff Weaver, who was Mr. Sanders’ presidential campaign manager, told Mother Jones.

“Sanders, for his part, has mostly stayed quiet about the future of the list, which one Democratic consultant referred to as his ‘precious,’” Mother Jones reported. And Mr. Sanders spokesman Michael Briggs told the online blog, “There has been no discussion with the DNC about use of the list.”

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