Staffers of the Democratic National Committee faced death and bomb threats following the internal emails leaks that plagued the 2016 presidential campaign, interim chair Donna Brazile revealed in an emotional speech to party members Friday.
Brazile said DNC staff continued to come to work every day despite receiving death threats over the emails that were hacked by Russia. The organization’s emails, which were eventually released by Wikileaks, showed some staffer bias towards a Hillary Clinton’s victory over Sen. Bernie Sanders in the primary, Politico reports.
“I watched for the last seven months people who came to work after their lives were threatened. After they had to deal with bomb threats,” Brazile said. “After they had to deal with people who wanted to murder them, they came to work for you. They didn’t back down, and I will never back down from them.”
Her speech was an emotional plea for unity within the Democratic party, which has been in the throes of self-reflection following Clinton’s election loss to Donald Trump. Party members are preparing to vote for a new DNC chair Saturday after Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s ouster last July. It has been a close race between former Labor Secretary Tom Perez and Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota.
“So don’t start anymore of this dis-unified party, we are unified,” Brazile told the crowd. “We are going to elect new officers tomorrow who are going to lead us forward.”