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  1. #1
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    Every Single One: Since 2009, Obama's DOJ Civil Rights Division Hired ONLY Leftist La

    Every Single One: Since 2009, Obama's DOJ Civil Rights Division Hired ONLY Leftist Lawyers (Hundreds!)


    Despite being exposed before, nothing has changed.

    In 2011, we produced the Every Single One series for PJ Media about an unprecedented wave of ideological hiring of leftist attorneys into the career ranks of the Justice Department. The series documented the partisan and radical background of every single one of the 113 new Justice Department lawyershired into the Obama Civil Rights Division from January 2009 to January 2011.

    With the help of PJ Media, we will now be updating that revealing report -- and sharing details about the background of Justice Department attorneys hired since 2011. Because we have obtained all of the resumes of the attorney hires in the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice since then.

    And once again, every single one of them has an intensely ideological background.

    PJ Media will feature them over the coming days. We will share their backgrounds, their involvement in partisan or leftist causes, and what they highlighted on their resumes to land jobs at the Justice Department. We will start with the Voting Section, where both of us once worked.

    When we are finished, you will see that the Obama Justice Department has assembled a law firm of hundreds of fringe leftists to enforce a brave new vision of civil rights law.

    Why the Civil Rights Division? Simple -- it may be one of the most powerful components of the entire federal government. If a president wanted to "fundamentally transform" the nation, he would likely start with the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department.

    The tentacles of the Division reach into virtually every crevice of American life. Federal statutes, under the banner of protecting civil rights, reach home lending, football stadium and theater seating, voting, elections, education, college admissions, apartment rentals, prisons, hiring practices, the use of English, special education programs, religious liberty, abortion clinic protests, arrests, law enforcement, voter rolls, insane asylums, state and local government hiring, swimming pool lift chairs, bathtub design, Spanish language ballots, school discipline, and even if boys can dress in drag in high school.

    This list barely scratches the surface of the scope of the Civil Rights Division’s powers.

    If a president wanted to transform a nation, he would unleash hundreds of crusading leftist lawyers who hold views far outside of the American mainstream and give them power to push the frontiers.

    That’s exactly what has happened in places Americans had hardly heard of before 2011 -- places like Ferguson.

    The first step of the president’s and the attorney general’s "fundamental transformation" was finding fellow travelers with law degrees. Without hiring hundreds of lawyers committed to the president’s vision of transformation into powerful career positions within the Justice Department, the effort would likely fail.

    The homogenous ideological backgrounds of the attorneys hired in the Civil Rights Division are essential to understanding what has happened to the nation.

    The Justice Department’s own inspector general recognized this as a problem in a report he released in 2013. The report criticized the Division’s Voting Section for hiring a majority of its lawyers from only five well-known liberal advocacy organizations (including the National Council of La Raza and the Mexican American Legal Defense Fund) and passing “over candidates who had stellar academic credentials and litigation experience with some of the best law firms in the country.”

    If you don’t think these individual attorneys are an essential part of the transformation, then you don’t understand how things really get done inside the Justice Department. It is the attorneys who pick the cases they pursue, usually from the swarm of incoming complaints they get, some from citizens, but many from the very same advocacy organizations where those attorneys used to work. Some complaints get relegated to the waste bin.

    For example, within the Civil Rights Division, complaints by white voters go nowhere in the Voting Section, and complaints by white victims of racially motivated violence go nowhere even faster in the Criminal Section. The latter is too busy protecting only “traditional racial minorities,” as former Attorney General Holder characterized it to Congress.

    During the Bush years, when we were at the Justice Department, the advocacy organizations that comprise the Soros-funded, bricks-and-mortar Left had the vapors over the Bush DOJ hiring a handful of eminently qualified conservative lawyers. Mind you, there was a far larger number of left-wing lawyers hired during the same period. But a conservative lawyer is considered an antibody inside the Civil Rights Division. Conservatives (or mere non-leftists, for that matter) slow down the lockstep march of the true believers, and therefore must be attacked.

    After the inauguration in 2009, the Obama Justice Department created committees to vest preliminary hiring authority in long-time career lawyers. Those career lawyers were invariably hired themselves during the Clinton years, and were reliably liberal. They could be counted on to self-replicate. Thus, they developed hiring criteria called a “demonstrated commitment to civil rights.” Naturally, their skewed version of civil rights was the “commitment” against which applicants would be judged.

    It proved to not be the same commitment to civil rights most Americans believe in.

    For example: if you believed that the color of your skin and not the content of your academic record should help you get into college if you are a “person of color,” that qualified as “demonstrated commitment to civil rights.”

    If you believed that it was okay for the New Black Panthers to stalk a polling place with a weapon because they were a historically oppressed race, and that the civil rights laws passed in 1965 weren’t meant to stop intimidation being conducted by blacks, that too is a “demonstrated commitment to civil rights.”

    If you oppose voter ID because you think black voters are too “unsophisticated” to know how to get voter ID -- an argument the Obama administration has actually made in litigation in North Carolina -- then that’s a “demonstrated commitment to civil rights.”
    The Justice Department’s inspector general concluded the hiring policies should be changed to eliminate this perceived bias toward the left. But former Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Tom Perez refused to implement a more fair hiring system. For this adherence to a rigged outcome, Perez was promoted to secretary of Labor and is now mentioned as a possible vice presidential pick.
    And so we watched what happens when you fill the government with radicals: radical policies follow.

    We documented instance after instance after instance of abuse of power by the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division. In some cases it involved theft and perjury. In others it involved high heels and comfort horses. It also included“grotesque prosecutorial abuse.” In nearly every instance it involved ideas far outside the mainstream of American life, and far outside the limited legal, statutory authority of the Division.

    The old adage goes “personnel is policy.”

    If presidential candidates really want to stop the madness, the first place to look is the Civil Rights Division. Many may have read our work at PJ Media and simply assumed a new president can just snap his or her fingers in January 2017 and make it all go away. But alas, no. Most of the lawyers we featured in 2011 are embedded career civil servants and cannot be removed because of the restrictions of a merit protection system 100 years out of date.

    But, as one former top political appointee in the Reagan administration once told us, they can be sent to a “Turkey Farm,” a place where turkeys go to feed and cause no more trouble.

    An incoming president can also reassign Senior Executive Service staff to other areas of the Justice Department (or other executive agencies), and even far outside of Washington, D.C., where they can no longer engage in the political mischief and obstructionism that is their raison d’etre.

    Importantly, many of the most recent hires we will name are still within their probationary periods as federal employees. When a new president takes the oath of office in January 2017, some of these lawyers will still not have vested. The extent that each lawyer participated in misbehavior and outlandish legal arguments should determine his or her future.

    Let’s hope we get a president who is actually willing to clean up the Division that the DOJ inspector general said showed a “disappointing lack of professionalism.” As he observed, changes are needed to ensure both the “professionalism and impartiality that are rightly expected and demanded by the public of the Department of Justice.”

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  2. #2
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    O was put into office to disintegrate our borders, a follow up to gw bush's initiative of blatantly opening our borders - it was during his presidency that we were flooded with illegals while we were busy worrying @ 911, apparently conveniently arranged.

    Clinton (another nobody put in office to push thru an agenda because he is a master deceiver), and old man bush with their NAFTA were initiators. This agenda did not just start but has been ongoing since the 70's or prior. It is culminating now.

    When environmental groups were told in the 70's "stop talking about overpopulation or I will not donate anymore", coming from their biggest donors, proves the takeover was already in the making.

    Trump is not part of it & therefore being trashed by his own party, (latino canadian cruz, con artist kasich definitely are as well as ryan &
    hillary - bernie is a frontman for something too).

    Along with illegals and dangerous "refugees" that should have a safe zone in their country, flood our gov't with
    racist hispanics, blacks and muslims (next in line as soon as o is able to fill our USA with more muslims, he is working on it and so are they as CAIR rally speakers are claiming to unite with blacks, hispanics), ALL THESE FACTORS enable the coup d'etat.

    If anyone other than Trump is elected, the globalists and their sellout American, so called public servants, will be able to complete their mission and our founding fathers will be spinning in their graves.
    Last edited by artist; 04-09-2016 at 01:33 PM.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    Posts Tagged ‘Loretta King’

    Civil Rights Commission Grills Perez on Black Panthers Case
    Friday, May 14th, 2010
    This article has been corrected.
    The Justice Department finally acceded to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights’ request for testimony, sending Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Thomas Perez on Friday to answer the commission’s questions about the DOJ’s handling of a 2008 voter intimidation case in Philadelphia.

    Thomas Perez (photo by Andrew Ramonas / Main Justice)

    Michael Yaki (photo by Andrew Ramonas / Main Justice)

    Abigail Thernstrom (photo by Andrew Ramonas / Main Justice)

    In the roughly 90-minute hearing, Perez defended the department’s actions and said the dispute was primarily between career lawyers.

    On election day in November 2008, members of the New Black Panther Party dressed in military garb and stood outside a Philadelphia polling place. A career lawyer, who was allegedly hired during the Bush administration for his conservative background,pursued a voter intimidation case against the men and the party.

    After the Obama administration took office, the department dropped the case against all but one of the defendants and obtained an injunction against a man who carried a nightstick. Congressional Republicans cried foul, and the conservative-controlled U.S. Commission on Civil Rights took up the case, holding hearings including one last month at which members of the New Black Panther Partyshowed up.

    Although Perez was not at the Justice Department when the decision was made to drop the case, he has dealt with the fallout since his confirmation. Apart from a handful of tense exchanges with two of the commissioners, Perez’s appearance Friday was much more subdued than the previous hearing which featured several Republican poll watchers from Philadelphia.
    In his opening statement, Perez said that the areas the commission was focusing on “represent just a small part of the department’s work to enforce federal voting laws.”

    Perez acknowledged his disagreements with various members of the commission on different issues, but kept up a diplomatic demeanor.

    “I’m here today because I have great respect for the institution of the Civil Rights Commission,” Perez said.
    Perez maintained there were no alternative motivations behind the decision to drop the case, a judgment made by then-Acting Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Loretta King.

    “This is a case about career people disagreeing with career people,” Perez said, noting that it demonstrates the “robust interaction” that is part of daily life at the Justice Department.

    Perez also defended the Justice Department’s refusal to turn over some documents to the commission. Those documents revealed internal deliberations about the case, he said, and the Justice Department has a longstanding tradition of protecting the internal debates and pre-decisional discussions of frontline attorneys from outside scrutiny.

    “They shouldn’t be wondering ‘Will it show up in a Powerpoint presentation tomorrow?’” said Perez.

    The case was primarily pushed by a career attorney who was hired by the Justice Department during the Bush administration amid a process the department’s Inspector General concluded was improperly politicized. That attorney’s lawyer argued he was required to testify, but the Justice Department did not allow him to do so.

    Pressed by Republican Commissioner Todd Gaziano, Perez agreed that voting rights laws should be enforced in a race neutral manner.

    During Friday’s hearing, Perez’s most heated back and forth came when he was questioned by Gaziano and Commissioner Gail Heriot, who switched her affiliation from Republican to independent during the Bush administration, allowing the commission to work around a law that mandated no more than four commissioners below to any one party.

    Heriot asked Perez about the injunction obtained against one member of the Black Panther party, who had carried a night stick. When Perez attempted to answer, she interrupted.

    “Dah, dah, dah, dah, I’m asking the questions,” Heriot said. “I’m a remedies teacher, this is what I do, I teach remedies,” she said, adding that she would fail a student who used the logic the Justice Department used.

    Perez pushed back at interruptions from Gaziano. “You’re not giving me a chance to answer your question, and if you want to keep interrupting, that is your prerogative,” Perez said.

    Heriot also asked why a more expansive injunction was not sought against the man. She worried that access to public transportation could allow him to roam around surrounding counties intimidating voters.

    “It’s easy for him to just hop on a bus,” she said. “He’s not so stupid that he doesn’t know just how to hop on a bus.”
    “Well he could go to New Jersey I guess, so should we expand it to New Jersey?” asked Perez.

    “Yes!” said Gaziano and Heriot simultaneously. Gaziano later demanded that a special prosecutor be appointed to look into the case.

    Abigail Thernstrom, the a conservative commissioner who disagrees with the focus on this case, called the New Black Panther Party a dysfunctional fringe group. She said she was frustrated that the commission was making the event the focus of its entire report for the year of 2010, especially when reports from previous years on issues like immigration have yet to be published.

    Democratic Commissioner Michael Yaki said the commissions focus on the case was making it a laughingstock, and that the conservative commissioners where looking to create a “Whitewater-esque conspiracy that isn’t going to get us anywhere and is only going to undermine the credibility of the commission.”

    “When you look at what happened during the Bush administration, when you look at the fact that they declined [to prosecute] people with guns intimidating Latino voters, that they declined [to prosecute] people who interviewed elderly black voters in their homes in Mississippi…where this commission has turned a blind eye to Katrina, turned a blind eye to so many other issues, but somehow we’re going to find fault with the Justice Department on this partisan issue is the height of hypocrisy,” said Yaki.

    The 2010 Enforcement Report by the commission, which centers of the New Black Panther Party case, is expected to be released ahead of the mid-term elections.

    An earlier version of this post incorrectly attributed a quote to Commissioner Michael Yaki. The quote was from Commissioner Todd Gaziano.

    Tags: Civil Rights Division, Loretta King, New Black Panther Party, Thomas Perez, Todd Gaziano, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights
    Posted in News | 10 Comments »

    Former Bush Official to Testify on New Black Panther Party Case
    Monday, February 8th, 2010

    Gregory Katsas (Jones Day)

    UPDATED Feb. 10: Hearing has been postponed due to weather conditions.

    Gregory Katsas, former Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Civil Division in the Bush administration, will testify this week at a U.S. Commission on Civil Rights hearing on the Justice Department’s handling of a civil case against the New Black Panther Party.

    Members of the group stood outside of a polling place in Philadelphia on Election Day in 2008, one of them holding a nightstick.

    In the last days of the Bush administration, J. Christian Adams, a conservative career attorney hired by Bradley Schlozman, a high ranking Civil Rights Division official later found to have violated hiring rules by considering political affiliation in an internal DOJ report, brought a case against the New Black Panther Party, its president Malik Zulu Shabazz, and the two members who stood at the poll.

    Months later, a career attorney, Loretta King, appointed to a temporary leadership position by the Obama administration, decided to drop the case against the party, Shabazz and one of the members who stood outside the polling place. DOJ obtained a temporary injunction against the member who held a nightstick.

    Conservatives have cited the event as evidence of politicization in the Justice Department and alleged that the Obama administration is protecting the New Black Panther Party. Every witness scheduled to appear at Friday’s hearing is affiliated with the Republican Party.

    The makeup of the commission has been called into question by some; four of the eight current members of the Civil Rights Commission are Republicans, two are Democrats and two are independents who switched their affiliation from Republican to independent. Months ago Michael Yaki, one of the commission’s two Democrats, complained, ”This is basically going to be a partisan kangaroo court, convened by my partisan colleagues.”

    Adams, the career Civil Rights Division attorney who brought the case against the New Black Panther Party, is not set to testify. Adams, who served as a poll watcher for the George W. Bush campaign in 2004, previously argued through a lawyer that he had an obligation to testify despite instruction from the Justice Department to ignore the commission’s subpoena. DOJ would be responsible for enforcing the subpoena, but cited internal guidelines to prevent Adams from responding.
    Katsas, who is set to testify, rejoined the law firm Jones Day in November. In his eight years at the department, Katsas represented the government in every federal circuit and the U.S. Supreme Court. He seemed to specialize in the controversial, arguing in cases concerning the detention of enemy combatants at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, the use of national security letters in counterterrorism investigations, the applicability of the state secrets privilege, the closure of immigration hearings for suspected terrorists, and the constitutionality of federal statutes on topics ranging from the Pledge of Allegiance to partial-birth abortion.

    Also set to appear at the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights hearing is Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.) who, ironically, was involvedin an event that could well be construed as intimidation. Just a few days before the 2008 election, an 83-year-old Wolf staffer whacked an opponent’s videographer with a metal cane. As in the New Black Panther Party case, a video posted on YouTube became a primary driver of the media coverage of the event.

    Chris Hill, an army veteran who runs the conservative group Gathering of Eagles which has clashed, sometimes violently, with anti-war protesters, will also appear at the hearing. He was interviewed by Fox News at the polling location in Philadelphia shortly after the incident.

    In addition, Bartle Bull, a civil rights lawyer who supported John McCain in 2008 and was interviewed by Bill O’Reillyabout the incident at the polling place, will speak at the hearing.

    Just one of the three witnesses testifying about the facts of the Election Day incident has not yet spoken about it publicly – poll watcher Mike Mauro. He appeared in the background of the news footage but was not interviewed.
    From the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights:
    There are three fact witnesses who will testify at the hearing scheduled for February 12, 2010: Mike Mauro,Chris Hill, and Bartle Bull. Each of these individuals was a poll watcher affiliated with either the Republican Party or the McCain campaign.

    Both Mr. Hill and Mr. Bull were interviewed by reporters. Their comments are reflected in the video excerpts provided. Mr. Mauro is also seen in the videos, but does not make any comments and was not interviewed. He is the young gentleman in the blue jacket seen off to the side in several of the videos taken at the property.

    All of these witnesses will describe the actions and comments of members of the New Black Panther Party, as well as conservations they may have had with poll workers inside the voting facility.

    In addition, the Commission will hear from Gregory Katsas, a former Department of Justice official, on the topics referenced in the attached letter.

    Finally, Congressman Frank Wolf will be appearing before the Commission to discuss his concerns and efforts relating to this matter.
    Joe Palazzolo contributed to this story, which has been updated since it was published.

    Tags: Bartle Bull, Chris Hill, Frank Wolf, Gregory Katsas, J. Christian Adams, Loretta King, Mike Mauro
    Posted in News | 1 Comment »

    The Black Panther Case: A Legacy of Politicized Hiring
    Wednesday, December 23rd, 2009

    When the George W. Bush Justice Department filed a civil complaint against members of the New Black Panther Party in January, it invoked a rarely used provision of the 1965 Voting Rights Act to allege voter intimidation.

    Bush-era Civil Rights Division official Brad Schlozman improperly politicized the hiring process for career attorneys, a DOJ investigation found. (Getty Images)

    It was the second time the Bush DOJ filed suit under Section 11 (b) of the landmark civil rights legislation – both times targeting black defendants.

    The common denominator in these unusual applications of Section 11 (b) is J. Christian Adams, a line attorney at the Justice Department who compiled the Black Panthers case and also worked on a 2005 federal lawsuit against black officials in Mississippi accused of discriminating against whites.

    Adams is a career Voting Section lawyer. He is also a foot soldier in the conservative movement, hired into the Justice Department during the Bush administration under a process the department’s Inspector Generalconcluded was improperly politicized.

    Adams’s background helps explain how a relatively minor incident in Philadelphia during the 2008 presidential election involving two members of an anti-white fringe group blossomed into a political controversy for the Obama administration.

    J. Christian Adams, one of the attorneys who brought the Black Panthers case, at a Federalist Society panel last month (Photo by Ryan J. Reilly / Main Justice).

    Adams previously had volunteered for the Republican National Lawyers Association, an off-shoot of the Republican National Committee that trains lawyers to fight on the often racially tinged frontlines of voting rights, and had been a Republican poll watcher in Florida for the 2004 presidential campaign.

    As a Virginia lawyer, he once filed an ethics complaint in Florida against the brother of Hillary Clinton, and reviewed a manuscript of abook that questions the contemporary need for Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act that he is tasked with enforcing.

    More recently, Adams asked a question at a meeting of the conservative Federalist Society in Washington that appeared skeptical of affirmative action, wrote a piece for the American Spectator that likened President Barack Obama’s world view to that of Nazi appeasers and argued on a conservative blogging network that health care reform is a threat to liberty.

    Hired in 2005 by Bradley Schlozman, a Bush-era political appointee who drove out veteran Civil Rights Division attorneys perceived to be liberal, Adams appears to be one of the “right-thinking Americans” with conservative affiliations that Schlozman improperly seeded throughout the bureaucracy.

    Civil service protections make his removal difficult, and Adams now is emblematic of the challenges facing Attorney General Eric Holderand Civil Rights Division chief Thomas Perez, who have vowed to “restore” the division to its historic mission of enforcing anti-discrimination laws protecting minorities, while adapting to new challenges.

    Republican members of the House asked for an investigation into whether politics played a role in the dismissal of the case and askedGOP senators over the summer to delay Perez’s confirmation over the matter.

    Grace Chung Becker (photo by Ryan J. Reilly / Main Justice).

    When asked about Adams’s role in the Black Panther case, Perez said in a briefing with reporters last week: ”I don’t want to get in the business of speculating as to why somebody brought something at what point.”

    The complaint Adams drafted was also signed by Christopher Coates, chief of the Voting Section, and then-acting Assistant Attorney General Grace Chung Becker, a Bush political appointee who failed to win Senate confirmation over Democrats’ concerns she wasn’t committed to enforcing anti-discrimination laws to protect minorities.

    “We clearly communicate our expectations [to Civil Rights Division attorneys]. If you meet those expectations that are transparent, then we want you to continue as long as you want to be there,” Perez added, in another session with reporters after a speech at the National Press Club last Friday. “And if you don’t, we hold you accountable.”

    Adams compiled the lawsuit against the Black Panthers, two of whom stood outside a majority-black Philadelphia polling place in November 2008 in military-style fatigues, one of them carrying a nightstick. After the Obama DOJ dismissed of the most of the complaint in May, outraged conservatives called for investigations into whether politics played an improper role in the decision.

    “That looks more like some sort of street fight than it does a polling place,” David Norcross, chairman of the Republican National Lawyers Association, said of a widely viewed video showing the incident.

    Adams referred questions about his casework to the DOJ’s Office of Public Affairs. A spokesman said the public affairs office doesn’t normally provide a log of cases on which a particular attorney has worked.

    A review of documents on the Civil Rights Division Web site indicates that more recently, Adams worked on complaint filed in March under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, under the Obama administration, alleging the town of Lake Park, Florida, denied black voters an equal opportunity to elect representatives of their choice. In October, the Southern District of Florida federal court entered a consent decree and judgment changing the way the town elected its commissioners.

    Turning the Voting Rights Act on its head

    The Section 11 (b) civil authority under which the Black Panthers lawsuit was filed is rarely used, since criminal acts of voter intimidation are usually referred for prosecution.

    The first known 11 (b) case since the early days of the Voting Rights Act came in 1992, when the government filed suit against North Carolina Republicans and the campaign of then-Sen. Jesse Helms (R-N.C.) for sending threatening postcards to 100,000 mostly black voters with misleading information about election laws.*

    There were no more 11 (b) cases until 2005. Then, the Bush administration filed a voter intimidation lawsuit against black officials in Noxubee County, Miss., alleging systematic discrimination against white voters. It marked the first time the DOJ had used authority of the Voting Rights Act to allege voting discrimination by blacks against whites.

    While the government won the Noxubee case and even Bush administration critics agree it had merit, they argue that pursing the case was a misuse of limited department resources. Critics also say the manner in which the Bush DOJ used section 11 (b) turned the spirit of the Voting Rights Act on its head. The 1965 act was passed amid incidents of beatings and harassment in the South by white mobs and Ku Klux Klan members against people demonstrating for black voting rights.
    “Sadly, the only two [section 11 (b)] cases that have been brought by the [Bush] department have been on behalf of whites,” J. Gerald Hebert, a former acting chief of the Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division, told Main Justice.

    The Government Accountability Office, meantime, recently highlighted a Section 11 (b) voter intimidation case that the Bush DOJ chose not to pursue. The case involved allegations that officials in an unidentified state had intimidated black voters.
    The GAO didn’t give further details, but Perez said in recent congressional testimony the division had opened an investigation into the incident cited in the report. He declined to elaborate, citing the ongoing probe.

    Hebert said in order to pursue a voter intimidation case, there should be depositions from voters who felt intimidated and the actions should be shown to be part of a larger campaign.

    The Black Panther complaint provided little evidence to support the government’s allegation that the group conducted a coordinated campaign to intimidate voters, Obama Department of Justice officials have told Republican lawmakers.
    “Frankly, the Philadelphia case [against the New Black Panthers] was on shaky ground from the beginning and was largely, I think, filed by the previous administration for the new administration to have to clean up, putting them in a difficult position,” said Hebert, a critic of the Bush administration’s management of the Justice Department who has written extensively about Section 11(b) for his current employer, the Campaign Legal Center.

    Spakovsky: ‘political hacks” at DOJ

    So far, no voters registered in the majority-black precinct in Philadelphia where the incident occurred have come forward publicly to say they were intimidated. The complaints have come instead from white Republican poll watchers.
    The conservative-dominated U.S. Commission on Civil Rights is investigating the DOJ’s handling of the Black Panther case, and Adams has fought to obtain permission to assist its investigation, over objections from his superiors at the Justice Department.

    Yet conservatives have raised no questions about the background or possible motivations of Adams, who compiled the case. Instead they have attacked the career DOJ lawyers who recommended dismissing it.

    Hans A. von Spakovsky at a Republican forum on ACORN (photo by Ryan J. Reilly / Main Justice).

    “Those two lawyers, Steve Rosenbaum and Loretta King, are two of the worst political hacks to be found in the career ranks of the Civil Rights Division,” wrote former Bush Civil Rights Division official Hans A. von Spakovsky in an opinion piece for National Review Online.

    House Judiciary Committee members Lamar Smith (R-Texas) and Frank Wolf (R-Va.) have written letters to the DOJ asking whether it “improperly considered partisan politics” in dismissing the Black Panther case.

    Spakovsky worked closely with Schlozman. He helped oversee the Noxubee case in Mississippi and assisted in the controversial purge of veteran lawyers in the division perceived to be liberal. The Democratic-controlled Senate in 2007 refused to confirm Spakovsky as a Federal Election Commission member.

    Spakovsky has also worked at the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights for commissioner Todd Gaziano, an official at the conservative Heritage Foundation who’s been the driving force behind the push to investigate the Black Panthers matter.
    Von Spakovsky told Main Justice said he hadn’t spoken with Adams about the case. “I know Christian just like I know all the lawyers, but I have not talked to him about the case,” he said.

    The Obama DOJ, he added, has “not offered any reason to justify its dismissal, which leads you to the obvious conclusion that there were political and other reasons for doing it.”

    In fact, Assistant Attorney General for Legislative Affairs Ron Weich has outlined the reasons for the dismissal in letters to Republican members of Congress. Read his response here (scroll down).

    I’m Just a Media Guy

    On election day in November 2008, a call came into the Philadelphia office of the John McCain for President campaign. Two black men in military-style fatigues and berets were standing outside a polling station. One of them was carrying a nightstick.
    Stephen Robert Morse, a young freelance journalist who’d been hired by the local Republican Party to document potential irregularities at the polls, jumped in a car and sped to the apartment building at 1221 Fairmount Street, in a majority black neighborhood of Philadelphia.

    “Dude, you got my back?” Morse said to a companion. He walked toward the two members of the New Black Panthers and began speaking for his video.

    “Hi, I’m here at 1221 Fairmount in Philadelphia and there’s a guy with a billy club right here,” Morse said. “So, do we have any problems here? What’s going on? Everything okay?”

    “Everything’s fine,” said Minister King Samir Shabazz, the Black Panther holding the night stick.

    “Okay, I’m just, I’m just making sure,” Morse said.

    Shabazz asked Morse to identify himself.

    “I’m just a media guy,” Morse said. “I’m with the University of Pennsylvania. Who are you with? Sorry?”

    “Ah … security,” Shabazz said. “Just wondering why everybody’s taking pictures, that’s all.”

    “I think it may be a little intimidating that you have a stick in your hand, that’s all. I mean, that’s a weapon. I mean, I’m a concerned citizen,” Morse said.

    “So are we. That’s why we’re here.”

    “Okay, but you have a nightstick.”

    “So what? You have a camera phone.”

    “I have a camera phone, which is not a weapon,” Morse said.

    Only 34 whites live in Precinct 4 in Philadelphia out of a total population of 970, according to census data. But there was a sea of white faces there that day, mainly Republican lawyers who’d come to monitor the polling station in what, since the disputed 2000 presidential election, has become an election-day ritual for both parties.

    Jerry Jackson, accused in a lawsuit by the Bush DOJ of intimidating voters, was also a certified Democratic poll watcher. (National Geographic)

    One of the white Republican poll watchers called police, and the nightstick-wielding Shabazz was shooed away without apparent incident. The other Black Panther, Jerry Jackson, who’d been issued a poll watching certificate by the Philadelphia County Board of Elections, remained.

    Although both Shabazz and Jackson had been recorded in an earlier National Geographic documentary calling whites “cracker” and other derogatory terms, no racial epithets were recorded on Morse’s video in Philadelphia.

    Then Fox News arrived.

    Fox reporter Rick Leventhal interviewed an unidentified Republican poll watcher who told of a more racially charged scene.
    The Black Panthers “told us not to come outside, because a black man is going to win this election no matter what,” the unidentified Republican poll watcher said on the Fox camera. “So, as I came back outside to see, the nightstick turns around and says, you know, ‘We’re tired of white supremacy,’ and starts tapping the nightstick in his hand.”

    Fox reporter Rick Leventhal said: “The Black Panthers were there to intimidate white voters from coming to this polling location?”

    “Or anyone who’s in their way. You know, I don’t know. A guy standing in front of a polling place with a night stick is a factor for all voters. Maybe little old ladies don’t want to walk through that,” the Republican poll watcher said.

    The video that Morse made was uploaded to YouTube through a Web site called, run by a Republican operative named Mike Roman.

    Later that evening, Barack Obama won the election, becoming the nation’s first African-American president.
    On YouTube, viewers started clicking Morse’s video. It eventually logged more than a 1.2 million views.

    Republican poll watchers complain

    In January, 13 days before Obama’s inauguration, the Civil Rights Division filed a civil complaint alleging that Shabazz and Jackson hurled “racial insults” and threats at both black and white individuals in Philadelphia, and “made menacing and intimidating gestures” directed at “individuals who were present to aid voters.”

    Those “individuals who were present to aid voters” appear to be a reference to the white Republican poll watchers who reported the incident and gave interviews to Fox News. So far, no voters of any race who were registered in that precinct have come forward publicly to say they were intimidated.

    King Samir Shabazz and Jerry Jackson (National Geographic).

    The New Black Panther Party made an easy target for Republicans. Characterized as a hate group by theSouthern Poverty Law Center, Shabazz and Jackson had been videotaped by National Geographic for a documentary calling whites “cracker” and other denigrating terms.

    The black separatist group takes its inspiration from, but is not related to, the 1960s Black Panthers, the original “black power” movement.

    Republicans have suggested the Justice Department dismissed the case because the New Black Panther Party helped get Obama elected. “It just smacks of some kind of a deal or a thank-you payback,” said Norcross of the Republican National Lawyers Association.

    But a review of Shabazz’s comments before the election indicate he wasn’t an Obama fan.

    “[Obama] is a puppet on a string. I don’t support no black man running for white politics. I will not vote for who will be the next slavemaster,” he told the Philadelphia Daily News days before the election, according toPolitico.

    The New Black Panther Party could not be reached for comment.

    Washington Times “Exclusive”

    After the Black Panthers failed to contest the lawsuit earlier this year, a default judgment was entered. The case then went to then-acting Civil Rights Division chief Loretta King for review.

    A career DOJ lawyer, King decided one incident didn’t constitute an orchestrated campaign or pattern to deny voting rights, the usual criteria for deploying federal resources in litigation.

    Associate Attorney General Thomas Perrelli (Photo by Ryan J. Reilly / Main Justice).

    She also had concerns about seeking legal action in part based on how the men were dressed, and noted that one of them – Jackson – held an official poll watching certificate, giving him a reason to be on the premises. She recommended dismissal, a decision approved by her supervisor, Associate Attorney GeneralThomas Perrelli, an Obama political appointee.

    The DOJ sought and won an injunction against Shabazz prohibiting him from carrying a weapon at polling stations through Nov. 15, 2012.

    On May 29, the Washington Times published an “exclusive” that said Justice Department “political appointees overruled career lawyers” in dismissing the case.

    “Career lawyers pursued the case for months, including obtaining an affidavit from a prominent 1960s civil rights activist who witnessed the confrontation and described it as ‘the most blatant form of voter intimidation’ that he had seen, even during the voting rights crisis in Mississippi a half-century ago,” the Times added.

    The affidavit came from Bartle Bull, who worked for Robert F. Kennedy’s campaign in New York 40 years ago but has since been better known as a novelist. Bull supported John McCain for president – a fact not noted by the Washington Times.
    After the Washington Times piece, Bull popped up in an interview with Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly. “The senior lawyer working on this case, Christian Adams, said to me, ‘if this is not a case of intimidation, nothing is,’” Bull told O’Reilly.

    Bull also said he’d heard the Black Panthers in Philadelphia say: “Now you’ll see what it is like to be ruled by a black man, cracker.”

    And Rep. Wolf gave a speech on the House floor in July excoriating Holder.

    Martin Luther King did not die to have people in jack boots block polling places,” Wolf said. “I question Eric Holder’s commitment to voting rights.”
    Standoff over subpoenas

    Now the matter lies in a standoff between the Justice Department and the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, which has subpoenaed the DOJ for internal communications about the New Black Panther Party case.

    Todd Gaziano is leading the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights inquiry into the New Black Panther Party case (photo by Ryan J. Reilly / Main Justice).

    The DOJ has resisted complying with the subpoenas, citing a Supreme Court precedent that protects the department’s internal work products from disclosure. But Adams has argued he is obligated to comply with the commission’s inquiry.
    The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights’ general counsel, David Blackwood – who like Adams and other staff members on the commission is a Republican National Lawyers Association member – wrote the DOJ on Dec. 18 to say the commission had agreed for now to postpone depositions of DOJ officials.

    The commission will set new deposition dates for the department employees in the next few weeks, and may consider subpoenaing other department personnel during the same time.

    According to a plan circulated among members of the commission by Todd Gaziano, possible deponents in January and February 2010 include Thomas Perrelli, Loretta King, and civil appellate section chief Diana Flynn. The plan also calls for a hearing in Washington in early 2010.

    The commission’s final report is scheduled to be released next summer, in advance of the midterm elections.

    Mary Jacoby contributed to this report.

    *Experts consulted by Main Justice indicated that the 1992 case was the first Section 11 (b) case they knew about. A reader has pointed out there was a case in 1966, and the language has been updated. While a previous version of this story called the Campaign Legal Center “liberal-leaning,” it is a non-partisan organization whose president served as general counsel for John McCain’s campaign in 2000 and 2008. Adams read the manuscript of, but did not edit, the book on the Voting Rights Act.

    Tags: Barack Obama, Bartle Bull, Bill O'Reilly, Bradley Schlozman, Christopher Coates, Civil Rights Division, David Blackwood, David Norcross, Diana Flynn, Eric Holder, Fox News, Frank Wolf, George W. Bush, Grace Chung Becker,Hillary Clinton, J. Christian Adams, J. Gerald Hebert, Jerry Jackson, Jessie Helms, John McCain, King Samir Shabazz,Lamar Smith, Loretta King, Martin Luther King, Mike Roman, New Black Panther Party, Republican National Lawyers Association, Rick Leventhal, Robert F. Kennedy, Ron Weich, Stephen Robert Morse, Steve Rosenbaum, Thomas Perez,Thomas Perrelli, Todd Gaziano, Voting Rights Act
    Posted in News | 35 Comments »

    GOP Lawmakers Press Holder on Black Panthers
    Wednesday, November 11th, 2009

    Members of the New Black Panther Party

    Two Republican lawmakers are pushing the Justice Department for an update on its inquiry into the conduct of Civil Rights Division attorneys who approved the dismissal of voter intimidation charges against the New Black Panther Party.

    Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), the top Republican on the House Judiciary Committee, and Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.), the ranking Republican of the House Appropriations subcommittee that oversees the Justice Department budget, wrote Attorney General Eric Holder on Tuesday.

    The lawmakers asked about a two-month-old Office of Professional Responsibility inquiry into the department lawyers who dismissed the complaint.

    “The elapsed time should have been sufficient for OPR to determine whether the department’s attorneys improperly considered partisan politics when they decided to dismiss this case,” the lawmakers said.

    The letter, which can be read in full here, asks for a response from Holder by Nov. 20.

    Republicans have been critical of the Obama DOJ’s decision to dismiss charges against a member of the black separatist group, who stood outside a Philadelphia polling place last November in military-style fatigues and beret. The DOJ won an injunction against another New Black Panther, who’d carried a nightstick.

    In April, acting Civil Rights Division chief Loretta King recommended dismissing most of the complaint, after the New Black Panther members and the party failed to respond. The complaint had been filed in January, in the waning days of the Bush administration. Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli approved King’s recommendation to dismiss the complaint, The Washington Times has reported. Read the notice of dismissal here.

    Assistant Attorney General for Legislative Affairs Ron Weich wrote Smith in July, saying the DOJ concluded the evidence did not support the allegation that the New Black Panther Party had directed its members to block polling places across the country. ”[F]actual contentions in the complaint did not have sufficient evidentiary support,” Weich said. The DOJ also had concerns about First Amendment issues, Weich said.

    Mary Jacoby contributed to this story.

    Tags: Eric Holder, Frank Wolf, Lamar Smith, Loretta King, New Black Panters, New Black Panther Party, Philadelphia, Tom Perrelli
    Posted in News | Comments Off

    Black Panther Case Headed for Public Hearings?
    Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

    The U.S. Civil Rights Commission is considering holding public hearings to investigate the disputed Black Panthers voter intimidation case, Main Justice has learned.

    Members of the New Black Panther Party

    A plan circulated last month by the commission envisions possibly one hearing in Philadelphia, where members of the militant New Black Panther Party were accused of intimidating voters by standing outside a polling place last November in quasi-military garb, one of them holding a night stick, according to a document reviewed by Main Justice.

    Todd Gaziano

    Another hearing is tentatively slated in Washington early next year, and would seek to call current and former Justice Department officials to testify.

    The hearings would keep in the public eye a controversial and racially tinged case that has already been a significant distraction for the new Obama Justice Department.

    “More oversight is a good thing,” independent Commissioner Todd Gaziano, an official with the conservative Heritage Foundation, said in an interview.

    But Francisco-based Michael Yaki, one of two Democrats on the Civil Rights Commission, criticized the continued spotlight on the case. ”This is basically going to be a partisan kangaroo court, convened by my partisan colleagues,” Yaki said.

    Michael Yaki

    Conservatives have objected to the Obama DOJ’s decision in May to dismiss the case against the New Black Panther Party and two of its members, and the controversy contributed to a delayin confirming President Obama’s choice to head the Civil Rights Division, Tom Perez.

    The case was filed in January, in the waning days of the Bush administration. But after the Black Panthers failed to contest the allegations, then-acting Civil Rights Division chief Loretta Kingreviewed the matter. She found the evidence weak and recommended dropping the charges, DOJ officials have said. There were First Amendment concerns about pursuing a lawsuit against the men based in part on their dress, and one of the accused Black Panthers — Jerry Jackson — was a certified Democratic poll watcher, DOJ officials have said.

    The Justice Department did obtain an injunction against defendant, Minister King Samir Shabazz, who held the night stick outside the majority-black polling station in Philadelphia.

    In September the commission — composed of four Republicans, two independents with conservative affiliations, and two Democrats — reviewed plans for an investigation and hearings.

    The plan includes gathering depositions or other information from Bartle Bull, a 1960s-era civil rights lawyer who said in an interview with Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly that he heard one of the Black Panthers say, “Now you’ll see what it is like to be ruled by a black man, cracker;” poll watchers Larry and Angela Counts and Chris Hill; the independent journalist working for the local Republican Party, Stephen R. Morse, who videotaped the Black Panthers in what became a YouTube hit; and the local police officers who responded to calls on election day from white Republican poll watchers concerned about the Black Panthers’ presence.

    Bartle Bull

    The panel would also seek to interview the defendants in the case, including Malik Zulu Shabazz, chairman of the Washington, D.C.-based Black Panthers. The voice mail at the New Black Panther Party headquarters is full, and no one has answered the phone in repeated attempts to contact the organization.

    The commission might also seek depositions from other current DOJ officials, including Associate Attorney General Thomas Perrelli, the department’s No. 3 official who signed off on King’s recommendation to dismiss the suit; King; Diana K. Flynn, chief of the civil Appellate Section; and Christopher Coats, Voting Rights Section chief.

    The envisioned hearings in Washington would also likely pit Bush-era Civil Rights Division officials, who have been accused of politicizing the division, against Obama DOJ officials working under the first black Attorney General, Eric Holder, who has said he wants to return the division to its “historic mission” of enforcing anti-discrimination laws to protect minorities.
    Commission Chairman Gerald Reynolds did not respond to requests for comment placed through commission spokeswoman Lenore Ostrowsky.

    The case also has many racial overtones. The Southern Poverty Law Center has classified the New Black Panther Party (which is not affiliated with the 1960s-era Black Panthers founded by Huey Newton) as a hate group for its anti-white rhetoric. And King, the career civil rights division lawyer who recommended dismissing the charges, is black. But most of the accusers are white, and the case was signed off on by then-acting Civil Rights Division chief Grace Chung Becker, who failed to win Senate confirmation after Democrats questioned her commitment to enforcing discrimination laws on behalf of minorities.

    Moreover, Bartle Bull’s charge that one of the Black Panthers used a racial slur against whites while invoking the impending election of Barack Obama — the nation’s first black president — has been further grist for the mill, mostly among conservative commentators.

    We are seeking comment from the Justice Department and will update this report if we receive a response. In the past, DOJ spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler has said: “We are committed to vigorous enforcement of the laws protecting anyone exercising his or her right to vote.”

    Below is the You Tube video of police arriving at the Philadelphia polling station last November:

    Tags: Black Panthers, Jerry Jackson, Loretta King, Michael Yaki, Minister King Samir Shabazz, New Black Panther Party,Todd Gaziano, Tom Perrelli, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, Voting Rights
    Posted in News | 2 Comments »

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