A Clinton campaign supporter fretted about how to create a perception of passion in Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, in an email to her campaign chairman.
The chain discussing how to make Clinton appear animated came from emails leaked by WikiLeaks on Wednesday. In the chain, a campaign supporter wondered how the campaign could create an aura of passion in Clinton, who was in danger of being overshadowed by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
“My goal is to keep her surrounded by and talking to low wage workers.”
So to help inject more passion into Clinton, the Democrat said the Clinton campaign should look for another Flint, Michigan — a victim of industry — to exploit for political purposes.
Podesta’s Gmail account was hacked and 50,000 of his emails have been leaking in batches nearly every day since Oct. 7.
The ideas to help change the perception came from Democratic activist Gina Glantz on Feb. 19, in an email to John Podesta, Clinton’s campaign chairman. Glantz is a longtime Democratic consultant, feminist and founder of Gender Avenger, which promotes gender equality.
Glantz told Podesta that Clinton should try to engage her supporters in small causes along the way to the Democratic National Convention.
"The idea is to motivate supporters (and some Bernie supporters) to join in, do something collective (Bernie like) – something for the 750,000 small donors (or however many there are) and activists to feel good about and brag about," Glantz wrote. "Something that starts to feel like real (albeit digital) engagement she is leading/motivating."
Glantz recommended such a cause — renaming an airport after Eleanor Roosevelt.
She also recommended blaming power plants in an upcoming primary election state for asthma — finding something else like Flint, Michigan, where the water was contaminated with lead. Glantz recommended looking at South Carolina for such a new political excursion.
"First, on her passion – I thought the trip to Flint was brilliant," Glantz wrote. "Getting ahead of him around 'caring' can be repeated. I am thinking – though may be unrealistic given the shortness of time – that there must be any number of low income communities with high rates of asthma or other stuff in South Carolina sitting next to fossil fuel plants belching out toxic material or at least unhealthy fumes. Not on the scale of Flint but for sure to be found all across the country."
Podesta said he was already on top of the issue.
"My goal is to keep her surrounded by and talking to low wage workers," Podesta replied. "That's where her passion comes out. Like the collective actions idea. Will see if we can get something going on that."
But creating passion and a feeling of genuineness in Clinton remained a struggle for the Democratic presidential candidate.
One example is a flurry of emails on July 1, 2015, about a thank-you message for Twitter. The campaign team struggled to sound genuine.
"I can live with that, but would prefer dropping grateful and instead 'THANKS so much people,'" wrote one campaign aide to Podesta on refining their tweet.
"OK great. They think 'thanks so much people' is perfect. No need for caps," concluded another staffer.