Election 2020

Wasserman Schultz Primary Challenger Accuses Her of District Bullying

DNC Chairwoman, Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) speaks during a Florida delegation breakfast July 25, 2016, in Philadelphia on the first day of the Democratic National Convention. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s (D-Fla.) primary challenger in the race to keep her seat says the just-resigned Democratic National Committee chairwoman has been bullying Dem venues in her district to not let him speak.

Tim Canova, a Bernie Sanders supporter and law professor, has been endorsed by Sanders in the Aug. 30 primary.

Canova told Fox this morning that “what she’s been doing at the local level is reprehensible.”

“She’s been fixing endorsements right and left, and I’ll say from the moment I jumped into this race, when I’d go to appear at a local Democratic club meeting or local union hall, the word had been passed along from Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s staff not to let this man speak,” he said.

“Every endorsement that she’s received has been an endorsement that’s been handed down from the leadership — whether it’s of a union, at the national level, or whether it’s a local Democratic club — or caucus, I should say. Whereas it’s every endorsement that my campaign has gotten has been a ground-up endorsement, where there’s a legitimate screening process and an endorsement questionnaire.”

Canova added that it’s been “rather frustrating to see somebody like this who, unfortunately, doesn’t practice what she preaches.”

He called Wasserman Schultz’s DNC resignation “good news for the party and for the country.”

“I was disappointed in Hillary Clinton’s announcement that — that Wasserman Schultz would be a co-chair of her 50-state strategy. First of all, she’s been such a disappointing chair of the DNC that one wonders whether she would even be effective in helping Hillary Clinton with a 50-state strategy.”

Plus, her challenger added, after the DNC leaks showed the behind-the-scenes party plotting, she “should not be rewarded in any way.”

Canova said in a statement today: “Our lawyers are preparing a complaint against Wasserman Schultz that we will file with the FEC for her wrongful use of DNC resources in her campaign against me, based on the wikileaks disclosures.”

One of the leaked emails shows Florida Democratic Party Executive Director Scot Arceneaux explaining in May why the candidate was initially denied access to the party’s voter database.

“He has access to the voter file,” Arceneaux wrote. “When he first asked for access to the voter file, the FDP said no because we do not provide access to this tool for candidates to run against Democratic incumbents. Canova protested and we decided in this special case to reverse our policy and allow Tim access to the voter file.”

Arceneaux claimed “Debbie was never involved in any way, shape or form.”