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Harris fundraises off report that her campaign data was stolen by rival campaign aide

Sen. Kamala Harris’s (D) presidential campaign is fundraising from a report that an aide on Tom Steyer’s presidential campaign stole valuable volunteer data collected by her campaign.

“We got some outrageous news last night,” the Harris campaign said in an email to supporters, referring to a report from South Carolina Post & Courier. “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,” the email continued. “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.”

The campaign then asked recipients for a donation. “We’re counting on you to help us fight back” it read.

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The Democratic National Committee (DNC) told The Post and Courier that it caught Steyer’s deputy South Carolina State Director Dwane Sims trying to export Harris’s campaign volunteer contacts. The Steyer campaign said that it does not have the data and that it notified the DNC and the state’s Democratic Party, suggesting that the data was downloaded accidentally. The DNC and state party denied this, The Hill reports.

Steyer spokesman Alberto Lammers said that Sims “acted quickly to alert the appropriate people to rectify the matter.”

DNC spokeswoman Xochitl Hinojosa said that Sims downloaded the data three minutes after notifying the party he had it. “We are talking about 180 seconds in a system that is notoriously inaccurate,” Lammers said in response. “And the DNC is not disputing the key fact that our employee proactively approached them to inform them of the matter. The bottom line is that nothing would have taken place if the DNC had been more diligent about the security of voter data.”

In a statement on Monday, the Steyer campaign said that Sims resigned after an internal investigation.

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Image courtesy of Gage Skidmore