Interim Democratic Party Chairwoman Donna Brazile, in a contentious interview with Fox News, repeatedly claimed that emails released by WikiLeaks have been “doctored” as she vehemently denied the implication in one of them that she received a question and tipped off Hillary Clinton prior to a March town hall.
Brazile did not provide specific details to back up her claim, but nevertheless asserted Wednesday that she never sent some of the messages attributed to her.
"I have seen so many doctored emails. I have seen things that come from me at 2 in the morning that I don't even send. There are several email addresses that I once used. … This has not been verified,” she said, going so far as to say “as a Christian woman” she understands “persecution” and would not stand for it.
Fox News’ Megyn Kelly, though, repeatedly pressed Brazile to account for one particular email about the town hall question that surfaced in hacked messages from Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta’s account.
The email was attributed to Brazile and forwarded a question about the death penalty, under the subject line, “From time to time I get the questions in advance.”
“Here’s one that worries me about HRC,” the email said.
Clinton Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri wrote back, “Yes, it is one she gets asked about. Not everyone likes her answer but can share it.”
The exchange came right before a March town hall hosted by CNN and TV One. Co-host Roland Martin reportedly had prepared that same question on the death penalty, and a similar question was indeed asked at the forum.
Donald Trump said at a rally in Ohio Thursday that Brazile “should resign,” calling the incident “cheating at the highest level.”
But Brazile, who was a CNN commentator at the time, denied getting a question in advance.
“I did not receive any questions from CNN,” Brazile said on Fox News’ “The Kelly File.” The interview was conducted shortly after the end of the final presidential debate in Las Vegas.
Pressed further, Brazile responded, "As a Christian woman, I understand persecution, but I will not sit here and be persecuted, because your information is totally false.”
She went on to assert the emails were “stolen” and accused Kelly of being “like a thief.”
“I am not going to try to validate falsified information,” she said. “The validity of those emails … a lot of those emails I would not give them the time of the day.”
This is not the first time a Clinton ally or member of her team has challenged the accuracy of the thousands of emails posted by WikiLeaks.
Clinton running mate Tim Kaine also has suggested they could be doctored.
But the campaign has not publicly presented further details to support their case, instead dismissing the controversy as a whole by maintaining that Russia is interfering in the elections.