Day 169: 11/5/19

Tuesday revealed that John Delaney accepts Alexa payments, Tom Steyer stole some of Kamala Harris’ data (possibly accidentally), and Joe Biden makes a case for not attacking people.


For all new readers: Welcome! I am currently on the mailing lists of 17 candidates for the Democratic Presidential Nomination! This blog breaks down recent emails with charts and excerpts. If you already know all of this, feel free to skip to the next chart!

I signed up to all mailing lists either on May 21 or the day the candidate announced, whichever was later. Using a different email address, I have donated at least $1 to all candidates who have been on a debate stage (I have given additional donations to my preferred candidates through my personal email, but the campaigns have linked the two accounts together and may ask for more as a result).

When showing breakdowns by campaigns, there will usually be 2 numbers. Emails to my non-donor account will be indicated by a darker color/top bar in horizontal bar charts. Emails to my donor account will be indicated by a lighter color/bottom bar.

Unless otherwise specified, all other charts combine the donor and non-donor numbers, as they are roughly 1-for-1, so the percentages and relative differences don’t change much. You can divide the numbers in half to get the rough estimate for what someone not signed up twice would be receiving. The rules I try to follow for the various categories are laid out in The Framework.

If you want specific data on any particular day, feel free to drop a comment!

While no one was excessively loud, everyone was trying to talk.

Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Julian Castro, Amy Klobuchar, and Elizabeth Warren all sent 3 emails on Tuesday, while Michael Bennet, Steve Bullock, Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders, and Andrew Yang sent only 2 each.

It was revealed that Pete Buttigieg does not like pie charts. To that, I say, DONATE?

The world of political donations just got a little more digital with a revelation from John Delaney.

Alexa. Donate to EVERYONE

Apparently, Alexa political donations are going to be a Thing now, though I can’t seem to find a list of who has them enabled yet. I guess I could plug in my Alexa again and donate $5 to every campaign (the minimum Alexa donation is $5), or… I could not.

Marianne Williamson is starting to feel the campaign finance pinch herself. She set the same goal as Elizabeth Warren–$1 million–though she didn’t specify when she needed it by. She said she needs it to be competitive in this final stretch.

I didn’t really have the heart to tell her it’s probably too late for her.

Kamala Harris still has a chance to be competitive, and she took it by lashing out at Tom Steyer.

“Tom Steyer aide stole Kamala Harris’ SC 2020 volunteer data, Democratic officials say”— The Post and Courier, November 4, 2019

We got some outrageous news last night.

A staffer for Tom Steyer, a billionaire who has already spent tens of millions of his own dollars to boost his candidacy, stole our campaign’s data in South Carolina. Our organizers have spent months building one of the strongest operations in the state, so we were outraged to learn Steyer’s team had taken volunteer contacts — some of our campaign’s most valuable data — directly from the voter file.

We can’t let this stand. We’re counting on you to help us fight back. Rush your first donation to our campaign right now:

Unlike others in this race:

Kamala isn’t a billionaire self-funding her campaign

Kamala doesn’t have a super PAC waiting in the wings

Kamala didn’t bring $10 million of leftover funds into this race

But you know what Kamala DOES have?


When this news broke last night, grassroots supporters just like you called out how wrong this action was and made sure it didn’t go unnoticed.

Our supporters and volunteers are the heart and soul of our campaign, and Kamala and our incredible organizing team have worked hard to earn your support — support that directly funds the very organizing and voter contact that is more than the envy of other campaigns.

That’s why this news was so alarming — and it’s why we need to fight back NOW.

Your continued investment helps us strengthen our ground game in critical early states like South Carolina and Iowa. We wouldn’t ask if it didn’t make a difference: can you pitch in your first donation to our campaign?

Thanks for continuing to stand with us.

Team Kamala

Now, yes, this is a big deal. However, from reading the news articles about it, I don’t think it’s as horrifyingly malicious as Harris painted it here.

As far as I can tell:

Tom Steyer hired a staffer who used to work for the South Carolina Democratic Party (SCDP). While working for the party, he had 2 accounts to access their data. 1 was his actual account, 1 was used for training.

When he became a Steyer staffer, his actual account was shut off but the training account was overlooked. His new Steyer account was limited to Steyer-data only.

There was a glitch in the payment system and Steyer’s payment for South Carolina’s Democratic data did not process. The SCDP shut off Steyer’s access to their data.

The payment went through and the SCDP restored access. In the process, they activated the training account the aide had, the one set up at party-level, with access to multiple candidates’ data.

Timelines get sketchy here. The aide says he started to download data he thought was Steyer’s, realized it was Harris’, and called the SCDP to report the issue.

The SCDP says the aide reported the issue and then, three minutes later, downloaded Harris’ data. They sent a cease & desist.

Regardless, the aide self-reported and took steps to fix the problem. The Steyer campaign investigated and deleted the downloaded data, then wiped the entire computer it was downloaded on. Steyer himself apologized to Harris, and the aide resigned from the campaign.

So… was it malicious? I highly doubt it. If it was malicious, why would the guy who did the downloading report himself?

Was it intentional? That’s sketchier. How many times have you gone to check your email immediately after someone said they sent you something, and then refreshed when it wasn’t there? I could easily see the timeline being a matter of the aide going “Okay, I told them to lock me out, let’s see if I’m locked out yet… nope. Not locked out. Was able to download that thing.” But that is still an intentional attempt to download someone else’s data.

Regardless, the Steyer campaign took swift action and apologized for the damage. This is a much better public response, in my opinion, than the Bernie Sanders campaign in 2016, which did not want to delete the stolen data from the Clinton campaign and had to be blocked from all DNC data in order to do the right thing.

Kamala Harris, however, is having none of his apology and is slamming him hard and fast to try to bring in some more funds.

Harris isn’t the only one going on the offensive. Michael Bennet and Julian Castro complained about the millions brought in by Tom Steyer. Castro made sure I knew how humble he was.

Humbly asking me twice.

However, for all that I mock Castro, he seems to have gotten the message. He sent an email to his supporters with an uncharacteristically positive attitude.

Last week, we didn’t know if I’d even still be in this race. This week, we have renewed hope and are optimistic about the future of this campaign. 

Your support has brought us to a new place and I couldn’t be more thankful. We’re excited to keep building. 


In just the past week we: 

hit our $800k fundraising goal – raising more than $1 million in October. 

are releasing new ad in Iowa.

received an incredible reception at the Iowa Democratic Party Liberty & Justice Celebration.

released our First Chance Plan for criminal justice reform, which I discussed live with Deray (the interview came out today).

have grown our list of endorsements, including 9 legislators in TX. 

oh…, and I met Griff the Drake University mascot.

Now I’m looking forward to appearing on the Daily Show with Trevor Noah tomorrow!

Let’s keep this going, donate now: 

Let’s do this,

Julian Castro

In all seriousness, where has this man been for the entire campaign? Look at the way he listed things that were going well and how hopeful he is for the future! This is a man who you could believe has a vision of a better tomorrow!

…or he could go right back to his old emails. Sigh.

Steve Bullock brought up the New York Times poll that had only Biden beating Trump in every battleground state and used that to argue why he was the best chance the Democrats had to win the election. Tulsi Gabbard decided to go a different direction and demand the truth about 9/11 from Trump.

Yes. That was her email from Tuesday.

Aloha Friend —

Last week, at the 9/11 Tribute Museum in New York City, I stood side-by-side with family members of the victims from the deadly attacks and demanded that the Federal Government declassify and release all information regarding the September 11, 2001 attacks so as to provide answers to survivors, the families of the victims, and the people of the United States.

All Americans deserve to know the truth about exactly what led to the attacks on 9/11, and who was involved.

Will you join me in calling on the Trump Administration to declassify and release this information? Add your name, and join me in demanding full transparency.

It’s been nearly 20 years since Al Qaeda attacked us on 9/11, and the American people still don’t have access to the truth about Saudi Arabia’s role and who helped Al Qaeda carry out these deadly attacks. It is absolutely unacceptable that our government’s investigation into Saudi ties has been kept classified from victims’ families and the American people.

The full disclosure of this information isn’t just necessary for closure for all the families and individuals involved, it’s essential for our national security so we can keep the American people safe. The Trump administration must put the interests of the American people first, and release this information now. 

More than 3,000 Americans lost their lives on that day, and we honor the memory of every single one of them. Those who were just getting to work that morning, children who were just getting dropped off at daycare, first responders who rushed into those crumbling towers to save lives. And the first responders who have been lost ever since. Never, ever will we forget the heroes who sacrificed their lives to save others.

For the fallen heroes and their loved ones,

Tulsi Gabbard

I’m not even going to get into this (how is declassifying military secrets supposed to HELP our national security!?). Instead, I’m going to turn to Joe Biden, who delivered a powerful email that would have gotten me to donate to him if he hadn’t kept interrupting himself to ask for donations.

The other day I was accused by one of my opponents of running in the wrong primary. Pretty amazing. On one level, it is kind of funny.

I have fought for the Democratic party my whole career. I know what we stand for, who we stand with and what we believe. And it’s not just policies or issues. It’s in my bones. That’s not something everyone in this primary can say.

But at another level these kinds of attacks are a serious problem. They reflect an angry unyielding viewpoint that has crept into our politics. If someone doesn’t agree with you — it’s not just that you disagree — that person must be a coward or corrupt or a small thinker.

Some call it the “my way or the highway” approach to politics. But it’s worse than that. It’s condescending to the millions of Democrats who have a different view.

It’s representative of an elitism that working and middle class people do not share: “We know best; you know nothing.” “If you were only as smart as I am you would agree with me.”

This is no way to get anything done. This is no way to bring the country together. This is no way for this party to beat Donald Trump.

There are a lot of ways — a lot of progressive ways — to fix our health care system and to make our tax system fair and to address the challenge of climate change. I believe I have proposed the most progressive, transformational ideas in this campaign — and I can get them done.

Please, will you help me accomplish this? A movement of tens of thousands of grassroots supporters is a powerful force →​

My health care plan expands coverage, lowers costs, lowers drug costs, allows people to keep their private insurance and won’t raise taxes on the middle class. I think it’s the best plan. That doesn’t mean I think those who disagree with me are cowards or small thinkers. And it doesn’t mean someone else doesn’t have some good ideas. I just think it’s a better way.

My tax plan will require the wealthy and corporations to pay their fair share, eliminate the most egregious tax loopholes and change our tax structure to reward work and not just wealth. I think it’s the best plan. That doesn’t mean those who disagree with me are corrupt or cowards. And it doesn’t mean others don’t have good ideas. I just think I have a better way.

I learned a long time ago that if you question someone’s motivations rather than their judgment you get nowhere. It’s hard to get past go if you start off by saying the other person is in the pocket of special interests or is corrupt. To get anything big done in this country, we need to persuade, to compromise, to reach consensus. That’s the way a democracy works.

I know this because I’ve got the support of principled Americans like you who are standing with me to restore the soul of our nation and defeat Donald Trump. Chip in to help us keep fighting →

Since some have questioned whether I’m running in the wrong primary – let me answer that question.

I’m running in the Democratic primary as a proud Democrat.

I stand with the Democratic Party of Barack Obama — the party that fought for and passed the Affordable Care Act — a historic transformation of our health care system that took a generation to achieve. And I’m proud to say I was there when we passed it. I’m not walking away from ObamaCare — I want to build on it. Maybe others want to walk away from ObamaCare — I don’t. And I don’t believe the Democratic Party should walk away from it either. I make no apologies for that.

I stand with the Democratic Party of Nancy Pelosi. Nancy is a historic figure — she will be remembered as one of the great Speakers in the history of this nation. She knows what it took to win back the majority in the House of Representatives. And she doesn’t want to put that majority at risk. She knows what it takes to get big things done. Nancy Pelosi believes we should build on the Affordable Care Act. There has never been a Speaker who was tougher, smarter, or had a bigger vision for this country than Nancy Pelosi.

So — let’s stop these kinds of attacks. Let’s keep our eye on the ball. Above all else, we must defeat Donald Trump.

If you’re with me, if you want to defeat Donald Trump, will you chip in $5 now to keep our campaign going strong

Thanks for your support,

Joe Biden

As Biden points out, we need to debate the policies, not the people. If you can’t make your case for why you are the best choice without tearing down your opponents, you do not have the political skill to be a great President.

I just wish he’d let his point stand without trying to milk it for money.

And Kamala Harris is past 400!

2 thoughts on “Day 169: 11/5/19

  1. FYI Tulsi’s email refers to attempts by families of 9/11 victims to sue the Saudis for their complicity in the attacks. Our government has been reluctant to release the names of Saudis who aided in the attack – probably in part because Saudi Arabia is a strategic ally.

    Liked by 1 person

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