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To rig primary against Bernie, DNC’s Tom Perez nominates regime-change agents, Israel lobbyists, and Wall Street consultants

With Senator Bernie Sanders surging in the polls, DNC chair Tom Perez has put forward a cartoonishly neoliberal cast of foreign policy hacks and corporate lobbyists to sabotage his nomination.

by Kevin Gosztola

Part 2 - Torture cover-ups, Russia fear-mongering, and lobbyist glad-handling

Denis McDonough was nominated to chair the Platform Committee. He was Obama’s chief of staff during his second term. McDonough is senior principal for the Markle Foundation and a chair of the Rework America Task Force.

In 2018, McDonough partnered with Heidi Capozzi, senior vice president of human resources at Boeing, to form the Rework America Business Network. It included 11 founding members: Aon, Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM), Boeing, Duke Energy, Kaiser Permanente, McKinsey & Company, Microsoft, Stanley Black & Decker, Walmart, Zurich Insurance, and 21st Century Fox. The network received support from Google.

Acting on behalf of the CIA, McDonough pushed for more redactions in the torture report summary that was ultimately released by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. He was a close ally of CIA Director John Brennan and fought for Brennan when the Senate delayed his nomination over his past support for torture. He also advised Obama on how to develop the drone program, which involved a kill list of alleged terrorism suspects to be assassinated extrajudicially.

Perez nominated Jake Sullivan to be a vice-chair of the Platform Committee. Sullivan was a national security adviser to Vice President Joe Biden. He also worked as a deputy chief of staff for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and was a senior policy adviser for Clinton’s 2016 campaign.

Sullivan is a member of the Alliance for Securing Democracy’s Advisory Council, which also includes Michael Chertoff, the ex-Homeland Security secretary; Bill Kristol; a neoconservative who pushed for the Iraq War; Michael McFaul, the former United States ambassador to Russia; Mike Morell, the ex-CIA director; John Podesta, the chairman of Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign; and Mike Rogers, the former Republican chair of the House Intelligence Committee.

As The Grayzone’s Max Blumenthal has documented, the Alliance For Securing Democracy is a factory of modern-day McCarthyism, where it brands alternative media outlets as “vehicles for Kremlin propaganda” and paints actual people as Russian bots to discredit dissent against U.S. foreign policy.

An email chain in the “Podesta Emails” that WikiLeaks published in 2016 showed Clinton offering support for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement if she was elected. It would have to pass some tests, but, as Sullivan indicated, environmental protections were not required: “Enviro was not a test.

Sullivan did not believe the Clinton campaign could limit contributions from lobbyists or their clients because “clients” might be difficult to define. They could advocate for stronger bribery laws to limit the political influence of donations on legislation, but that would be “really dicey territory” for Clinton, he added.

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