Democrat Socialist presidential candidate Bernie Sanders is meeting with President Obama as we speak. Most expect that the conversation will center around “encouraging” Bernie to exit the race finally, throw his support behind presumptive nominee Hillary Clinton and urge his supporters to do the same.
But it’s likely Sanders’ presidential campaign may not be the only casualty resulting from the meeting today.
Democrat National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz may be the sacrificial lamb required to make party peace.
As Fox News reports:
Bernie Sanders returns to Washington Thursday for a high-stakes meeting with President Obama – and later, Harry Reid – where one of his key demands in exchange for a chance at party peace could be nothing less than the removal of Democratic boss Debbie Wasserman Schultz.
Fox News has learned Wasserman Schultz’s leadership of the Democratic National Committee is one issue he could bring up in the unity huddle.
Sanders and the DNC chairwoman have been at odds for months, with Sanders’ team long accusing her of helping now-presumptive nominee Clinton.
Whether Sanders seeks – and the president would even consider – a Schultz sacrifice is the open question.
“I don’t see how she makes it through the convention,” one Democratic lawmaker told Fox News. “The key to Hillary winning is getting Sanders supporters on board.”
So far, Obama and even Clinton have resisted applying public pressure on Sanders to drop out, though their patience may soon wear thin. Thursday’s meetings will be a chance to test what it is Sanders is looking for, with party leaders eager to bring his millions of supporters back into the fold.
Speculation over Wasserman Schultz’ position has swirled for months, however, and so far she has retained the public support of the White House. Obama also endorsed her earlier this year in her House primary battle.
Asked Wednesday about the possibility of Sanders seeking her removal during meetings Thursday with Obama and Senate Minority Leader Reid, D-Nev., Wasserman Schultz said she’s not worried about her job.
“I’m going to be remaining as the chair of the Democratic National Committee as President Obama has asked me to do until January 21, 2017, and I appreciate the president’s support,” she said.
Still, Fox News has learned some factions in the Democratic Party as well as Sanders loyalists have pushed for Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, as a potential replacement at the helm of the DNC. Gabbard is a Sanders supporter, which could help with outreach to Sanders backers and bring Sanders himself into the fold.
If Obama indeed does sacrifice Wasserman Schultz in the name of party unity, it may be one of the first accomplishments of his we can actually cheer wholeheartedly. Getting Bernie to exit the race while relieving us Little Debbie at the same time? Talk about killing two birds with one stone — a real win win!
We shall see.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]