After a rowdy state Democratic convention in Nevada turned violent last weekend, Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) campaign manager on Wednesday downplayed the flare-up as a “Nevada-centric issue” but accused the national party chair of personally working against Sanders.
Jeff Weaver called a sharply-worded statement from Democratic National Committee chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) “ridiculous,” saying Sanders has made it clear he wanted his supporters to act civilly.
“The chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, it’s been pretty clear almost from the get-go that she has been working against Bernie Sanders for personal reasons,” Weaver said in an interview on MSNBC, citing the DNC’s debate schedule and fundraising agreement with Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
Pressed about what “personal reasons” Weaver was referring to, he responded that other top-ranking Democrats disagree with the chair’s tactics and said she acted “unilaterally” when the DNC cut off the Sanders’ campaign’s access to voter data amid a data breach.
“So you think she’s greasing the skids for Hillary Clinton,” host Steve Kornacki asked.
“I don’t really know what her motivation is,” Weaver said. “But it’s clear there is a pattern of conduct from the beginning of this campaign that has been hostile to Bernie Sanders and his supporters and really she has become a divisive figure in the party.”
Asked whether he was taking issue with Schultz herself or with the Democratic nominating process, the campaign manager downplayed the ongoing dispute in Nevada, where the state party has filed a complaint against Sanders with the DNC.
“Look, we have competed in some 40 states,” Weaver said. “We’ve had a dispute with one state party at this level, the Nevada state party. It’s a Nevada-centric issue.”
“Let’s not confuse what went on in Nevada with a broader issue,” he concluded.