Luke Brinker | .Mic | Yahoo News | December 18, 2015
Manchester, New Hampshire — Hillary Clinton arrived here for the third Democratic presidential debate Saturday under distinctly propitious circumstances.
Her chief rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), was engulfed in a political firestorm amid revelations that his campaign had improperly accessed and saved the Clinton campaign’s voter data. The episode triggered a bitter war of accusations and recriminations, with the Sanders campaign fundraising off the backlash to the Democratic National Committee’s temporary suspension of its access to voter data and Hillaryland blasting Sanders for making his campaign’s alleged “theft” a “rallying point.”
For Clinton, the case for forcefully challenging Sanders during their face-off at Saint Anselm College was compelling. While Sanders was unaware of the data breach until news of the accusations broke Thursday night, the incident raised significant questions about Sanders’ management acumen. For a campaign that’s railed against establishment politics-as-usual, the data breached smacked of dirty backroom tricks.