Presidential races

Emails show Clinton camp’s plans to work with writers to hit Sanders

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A new batch of hacked emails released Friday revealed that the Hillary Clinton campaign worked to coordinate with liberal bloggers to indirectly attack her Democratic primary opponent Bernie Sanders.

{mosads}Several people on Clinton’s team — though she didn’t chime in directly — discussed strategies for going after Sanders with help from outside groups and individuals. 

“Here’s our quick rundown of what is in the works in digital and digital comms land right now, keeping in mind that we are trying to do a few bigger campaign things (such as amplifying any remarks the candidate makes) and possibly sending an email, while also working with HRC [Human Rights Campaign], Planned Parenthood, and people who can help push this behind the scenes without our fingerprints,” a Clinton aide wrote in an email published by WikiLeaks.

The team also discussed working with specific writers on pieces favorable to Clinton.

“Working with bloggers and columnists to write about this from a racial justice and reproductive rights perspective, including a few people who joined us on a call to talk about the ‘Bernie Backlash’ that was unfolding even before his remarks last night—current list is Elianne Ramos, Jessica Valenti (who is writing a column on this as we speak), Jamil Smith, Sady Doyle, Aminatou Sow, Gabe Ortiz, and others,” the email read.

The plans seem to be for a Clinton counterpunch to Sanders’s January comment that groups like Planned Parenthood, NARAL, and the Human Rights Campaign are part of a “political establishment.” 

“[T]his is one of the first Bernie hits that seems to really be resonating and picking up traction online,” Clinton aide Lauren Peterson wrote.

She also suggested getting celebrities friendly with Clinton — like Shonda Rhimes, Ricky Martin and Julianne Moore — to respond to Sanders’s comments and pushing the hashtag #ImSoEstablishment.

Two days after the discussion that took place on Jan. 20, Valenti published an article titled “Bernie Sanders must deliver more than platitudes about abortion,” Paste reported on Friday. Valenti said in a tweet that they knew about her column because she had already reached out to them for comment.

“Like many reporters, I talk to campaign officials but don’t coordinate with them,” she said.

Smith, a correspondent for MTV News, said that he has been in touch with campaigns from both sides of the aisle. 

Ramos joined Clinton’s campaign in August.

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