The Democratic National Committee on Friday capitulated and agreed to reinstate Sen. Bernie Sanders’ campaign’s access to a critically-important voter database.
The about face came late on Friday night as a deadline neared for a hearing on a motion for an emergency injunction which the Sanders campaign sought after he sued the party in U.S. District Court in Washington.
The lawsuit sought the “immediate restoration” of the campaign’s access to the voter database. It argued that without the database, the campaign would lose some $600,000 a day in donations.
The campaign’s access to the database should be restored by Saturday morning in time for the campaign staff and volunteers to contact voters over the weekend.
“We are extremely pleased that the DNC has reversed its outrageous decision to take Sen. Sanders’ data. The information we provided tonight is essentially the same information we already sent them by email on Thursday,” said Jeff Weaver, Sanders’ campaign manager.
“Clearly, they were very concerned about their prospects in court. Now what we need to restore confidence in the DNC’s ability to secure data is an independent audit that encompasses the DNC’s record this entire campaign. Transparency at the DNC is essential. We trust they have nothing to hide,” Weaver added.
The DNC decision to let Sanders use his own database came after the national party was barraged with outraged messages from grassroots supporters of Sanders. There were more than 214,800 people who signed an online petition to the DNC circulated by Sanders’ campaign. MoveOn.org collected another 250,000 petition signatures and Democracy for America collected 100,000.
Earlier on Friday, Democracy for America issued a statement from Executive Director Charles Chamberlain saying, “The Democratic National Committee’s decision to attack the campaign that figured out the problem, rather than go after the vendor that made the mistake, is profoundly damaging to the party’s Democratic process. DNC leaders should immediately reverse this disturbing decision before the committee does even more to bring its neutrality in the race for President into question.”
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