Emails Show Clinton Camp Picked Staff By Ethnic, Gender Quotas

Zach Montanaro | October 24, 2016
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Last week, headlines were made about how Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta sorted potential VP picks into assorted “food groups” based on the potential candidate’s race and ethnicity. Now, it appears this might not have been just a one-time thing for the Clinton campaign.

A new batch of emails released shows Clinton aide Cheryl Mills sending Podesta an email with a list of “top 10 or so positions.” As highlighted below, the position of Political Director is simply filled with “Hispanic Woman.”

The email is dated Feb. 15, 2015. More than a week later, Roll Call reported that Amanda Renteria was tapped to be the national political director for the Clinton campaign. Renteria is Hispanic, and is still working for the campaign today.

In the email, Mills went on to provide a breakdown of the ethnic and racial breakdown of each of those positions by POC (people of color), women, and white men.

Note how the ‘women’ category includes a note that assumes “the COO is a white woman.” Yet earlier in the email, that COO position is listed as "TBD." According to her LinkedIn account, the current COO of the Clinton campaign is Beth Jones, who's been in that role since April of 2015, two months after this email was sent.

To be very clear, it would be very wrong to assume that these two woman only got their jobs based on their ethnicity, as both had extensive resumes. 

It is worth noting, however, that the Clinton camp appeared to be very concerned about hitting some sort of diversity quota while hiring future campaign staff -- so much so that one of Clinton’s top aides broke down potential staff into diversity percentages even before the staff was fully formed.

Again, it would be naïve to assume that anyone on the Clinton campaign got their jobs because of their race, ethnicity, or gender first and foremost. It is not naïve, however, to call out a presidential campaign for breaking down their hires into diversity quotas before even taking into account their skill and competence for the job.

After all, remember when the media tore into Mitt Romney's assertion that he had "binders full of women?"