Former Democratic Party boss Donna Brazile – in her bombshell campaign book and media interviews promoting it – has painted the picture of a Hillary Clinton presidential campaign that was impenetrable and even “cult”-like, hampering any effort by advisers who warned about the missteps that gave Donald Trump a path to the White House.
In an interview Wednesday night on Fox News' "Tucker Carlson Tonight," Brazile seemed to walk back suggestions in her book that some on the Clinton team were sexist, but described their attitude this way:
“It was dismissive. Condescending and dismissive, those are the words I characterize in the book,” Brazile said.
Brazile suggested not enough effort went into old-fashioned, on-the-ground campaigning.
“Everybody worshipped the data and the analytics,” she wrote in her book, “Hacks.”
Brazile told Fox News she and people like campaign manager Robby Mook came from “different” schools: “They do algorithms, they do data modeling.”
So if she had these concerns, why couldn’t she break through?
Asked that question Wednesday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Brazile claimed she tried but “could not crack them.”
"I felt like it was a cult," she said. "You could not penetrate them.”
The book, and Brazile’s subsequent media interviews, have fueled tensions between the longtime Democratic strategist and Clinton World.
Dozens of Clinton campaign team members fired back at the book over the weekend, saying in an open letter:
“Donna came in to take over the DNC at a very difficult time. We were grateful to her for doing so. She is a longtime friend and colleague of many of us and has been an important leader in our party. But we do not recognize the campaign she portrays in the book.”
Perhaps the most explosive charge, released in an excerpt last week ahead of publication, claimed the DNC struck a special deal with the Clinton campaign giving the camp partial control over party decisions and resources in exchange for financial help. The claim fed concerns from Bernie Sanders supporters that the former Democratic primary candidate was at an unfair disadvantage from the start in his race against Clinton for the nomination.
Brazile maintains she worked hard during the general election to try to help Clinton win and stresses that her aim even now is to help the party heal.
“I'm focusing on making sure that grassroots Democrats know that our party is going to become stronger. You have to let these wounds heal,” she told Fox News. “We had a very competitive primary. I don't know when the Republicans will sit down and heal their wounds, but we are healing our wounds, and we are going to learn how to become a stronger, more effective party.”