This will be a bit of a shorter blurb, but it relates to a personal experience I had recently. Bernie Sanders did his first Town Hall, taking questions from what is supposed to be the general public. CNN vets people’s questions and supposedly checks their background to improve the quality and integrity of these Town Halls. It seems like they didn’t do a very good job vetting people as industry insiders in the form of DC Lobbyist firm interns made it through and put up their obviously targeted questions to insinuate that Bernie is a racist, sexist, and unqualified candidate. I’ll focus quickly on this instance I noticed of the rabbit hole going even deeper.
Lobbyist Interns In The Sanders Town Hall
So the reveal that there were many questions asked of Bernie by DNC insiders, campaign employees, and lobbyist interns… Was presented by a Twitter user who has very leftist leanings:
Paste Magazine also did an excellent write-up on these obvious plants and CNN’s actively concealing their identity, which I linked just above.
It’s old news that political activists and lobbyist groups try their best to get plants into these Town Halls to push an agenda. The problem with this is not that they are there, questions are fair game… The problem is CNN subtitling these askers of these questions as “young college student” and “teacher”, when they are far more than just that and their questions are obviously informed and built upon ties to their employer.
Instantly, almost like it was planned, @respecteconomy’s tweet was accused of sexism. I’m not sure what is sexist about it at all, but sure enough…
This struck me as odd because there isn’t really anything sexist about a person pointing out that DC lobbying firm Intern was asking a question that undermines Sanders’s campaign on account of his age, race, and gender instead of asking him his policies or positions on political issues.
Who Is Maggiy Emery?
Call me crazy, but some instant spark went off in my head, the accusation of sexism for pointing out a simple fact made me suspicious. So I checked the twitter profile. She had tweets that were not even close to as eloquent as the one she tweeted. This made me suspicious that it was a sockpuppet account, especially because the picture almost looked like a stock photo. I reverse google image searched her avatar and I googled her name “Maggiy Emery”. I got zero results on reverse image searches, so not likely a sockpuppet. But the Google search turned up an interesting hit:
So a Political Science degree and has worked on multiple campaigns over the past 3 years. Her twitter account has no evidence of this background whatsoever, which is fine. However, doesn’t this seem like motivated reasoning? Who are the candidates she backed?
Dan Feehan – Minnesota Congressional District 1 Candidate
Dan Feehan attempted to take a normally Republican seat in MN-1. What kind of issues did he run on?
As you can see, he is in line with the market-driven Affordable Care Act position of the DNC. This is in direct opposition to Bernie Sanders who has been staunchly pushing for a full Medicare-for-all plan to replace the private insurance industry’s deadly stranglehold on the American people.
Here he is appealing to the Republican voters in this district, trying to say we need to “strengthen our borders”, “holding employers who hire undocumented immigrants accountable”, and basically wanting to work with ICE. This is somewhat in opposition to the progressive wing of the Democratic party that is gaining traction. Many of us on the progressive side, Bernie included are either calling for the abolishment of ICE or the refinement of it’s policies to the point it can’t do what it does today that is so morally abhorrent (child separation, mass imprisonment and deportation, deaths and sexual assaults in their custody).
So Maggiy Emery worked for a an arguably centrist Democrat political campaign. A campaign that is aligned with the anti-Bernie wing of the DNC.
Angie Craig – Minnesota Congressional District 2 Representative
Angie Craig had secured an almost historic win for Dems in MN-2. Sweet:
So on healthcare, she too is in opposition to Bernie and the progressive wing of the DNC. She is using the same “affordable options” style rhetoric and the new 55 year old medicare starting age change.
She talks about, in a Feinstein-ish kind of way about needing to get bipartisan support for environmental bills. Any progressive knows the Republicans are not willing to budge on environmental changes to avert disaster due to Climate Change. This flavor of rhetoric is again in opposition to Bernie’s campaign and notably Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal.
So Maggiy Emery worked for another arguably centrist Democrat political campaign. A campaign that is also aligned with the anti-Sanders wing of the DNC currently.
Motivated Reasoning – We All Do It
In summary, Maggiy Emery called a Bernie Sanders-allied tweet into question on accusations of sexism. Why? Well we don’t know why, but I can suggest that we all take her accusations with a grain of salt for a simple reason. Nope it’s not because she’s a woman, sorry if that jumped to your mind.
It’s because she has empathized with the target of ire, the DC Lobbyist Intern who was an obvious plant. And it’s very reasonable empathy, but her perspective is skewed. To her, I don’t think she really understands why the general public would have a problem with CNN concealing the fact that this person works for a corporate lobbying firm as an intern and is asking a carefully written question to a very anti-corporation candidate that obviously implies he doesn’t care about people of color, women, young people, and other minorities politically. This is very important information for voters to make informed decisions. It was a betrayal on CNN’s part that was being called out, not the individual.
So let’s not just jump to conclusions, be skeptical, evaluate claims yourself, and don’t forget that the individual claiming those things has their own motives as well that might flavor their interpretation differently than you might. I hope Maggiy Emery considers how it looks in the future that she jumps to the defense of a fellow DNC insider with a specious accusation of sexism toward someone who just presented the facts that CNN purposefully withheld.