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Democrats used a cheat sheet to deal with Black Lives Matter, leak reveals

The hacker known as Guccifer 2.0 struck again, leaking an internal memo from Minority House leader Nancy Pelosi's server.
August 31, 2016, 7:45pm
Photo by Jacquelyn Martin/AP

Democrat lawmakers were given their very own "do's and don'ts" cheat sheet on what to do when approached by a Black Lives Matter activists, according to an internal memo that was leaked from Minority House leader Nancy Pelosi's server.

The document, which was obtained and posted online by the mysterious hacker Guccifer 2.0, was sent by Troy Perry, a former Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee staffer, to the rest of the committee staff in November 2015.

Perry describes Black Lives Matter as "a radical movement to end "anti-black racism," and offers a guide for politicians who may be struggling to find appropriate language when discussing the Black Lives Matter movement.

"Do not say 'all lives matter' nor mention 'black on black crime,'" Perry advises. "These are viewed as red herring attacks. This response will garner additional media scrutiny and only anger BLM activists. This is the worst response."

Under the subheading "Tactics," Perry writes: "When approached by BLM activists," do "listen to their concerns" but "don't offer support for concrete policy positions."

So what are the "concrete policy positions" that Democratic lawmakers are being advised to withhold their support from?

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Perry writes that "though police abuses are a central component, the founders view the movement more broadly." Other issues or demands he identifies include reforming the criminal justice system, "an end to police brutality and the killings of unarmed African Americans," collecting data on police shootings, and the demilitarization of the police.

A spokesperson for Black Lives Matter wrote in an email to VICE News that they were "disappointed" by the language used in the document. "We are disappointed. We deserve to be heard, not handled," the spokesperson said. "We expect that our elected officials will stop pacifying and take us seriously."

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee confirmed the hack to VICE News. In a statement, DCCC National Press Secretary Meredith Kelly wrote that the committee "highly respects and values the leadership of the Black Lives Matter movement."

"In less than two years, BLM has evolved from three words into a political force that is changing and waking our nation," Kelly wrote. "We will not allow this hacking to distract from our common goals nor disparage the BLM movement."

Guccifer 2.0 is an anonymous hacker who first made waves last month when they published a trove of emails between Democratic National Committee members via WikiLeaks just days before the Convention kicked off in Philadelphia. Cybersecurity experts have speculated that Russian intelligence groups could be using Guccifer as an alias to disrupt the US political process.

"I have a folder from the [sic] Nancy Pelosi's PC and I'd like to share some docs from it with you." Guccifer wrote on Tuesday. "They are related to immigration, Hispanics, BLM, Islam and other issues."

Nancy Pelosi's office declined to comment.