Omnibus Funds ‘Permanent Extended Coffee Break’ for Dozens of DOJ Employees

After the Court's Shelby decision, dozens of DOJ lawyers have nothing to do. But not one has been laid off.


January 14, 2014 - 7:35 am

Hans von Spakovsky has the inside scoop of the new omnibus spending bill. Most notably, the new bill funds the government jobs of dozens Department of Justice employees who no longer have any work to do after the Supreme Court struck down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act. Von Spakovsky writes:

Of course, the other thing needed with the Civil Rights Division is a cutback in its budget, which has grown considerably, and gives Eric Holder the resources to file numerous suits challenging common sense voter ID, immigration, and other state laws he does not like. There are also at least two dozen lawyers and support staff in the Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division who have seemingly had nothing to do since the U.S. Supreme Court declared the coverage formula for Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act unconstitutional in June 2013. These DOJ personnel who worked on Section 5 matters are now on a permanent, extended coffee break – yet not a single one of them has been laid off. This is an enormous waste of taxpayer funds that should have been eliminated by Congress.
Permanent extended coffee break? Indeed.

Inside the Justice Department Civil Rights Division Voting Section, almost three dozen federal jobs were rendered irrelevant after the Supreme Court’s decision in Shelby v. Holder. Sources report that after the decision, the employees have done next to nothing, or taken “extended coffee breaks” as von Spakovsky reports. Here are the federal employees von Spakovsky is referring to, and salaries from public records searches provided to PJ Media.

Berman, Robert; Deputy Chief, Section 5, $155,500
Bashir-Boulghassoul, Lema; Trial Attorney, Section 5, $136,134
Falwell, Marie; Equal Opportunity Assistant, Section 5, $56,791
Greene, Judybeth; Trial Attorney, Section 5, $155,500
Grigsby, Kevin; Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $64,548
Gyamfi, Stephanie, Lead Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $97,936
Hamilton-Hill, Sandra, Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $81,204
Harrison, Martin; Legal Technician (File Librarian), Section 5, $54,534
Hyatt, Joi; Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $70,794
Johnson, Phyllis; Case Management Specialist, Section 5, $65,343
Jones, Nadine; Legal Technician (Classifier), Section 5, $68,230
Kim, Elizabeth, Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $64,548
King, Ryan, Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $62,467
Le, Tran-Chau, Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $70,794
Lowell, Robert; Attorney Reviewer, Section 5, $155,500
Murray, Joseph, Lead Civil Rights Attorney (Trainer), Section 5, $97,936
Payne, Autumn; Lead Civil Rights Attorney, Section 5, $94,969
Powers, John; Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $79,864
Reed, Judith; Trial Attorney, Section 5, $155,500
Rich, James Eric; Trial Attorney, Section 5, $152,635
Riggins, Jesmond; Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $62,467
Riordan, Maureen; Trial Attorney, Section 5, $155,500
Robinson, Pamela; Secretary, Section 5, $52,061
Schaffer, Tracy; Lead Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $94,969
Soo-Tim, Tiffani; Secretary, Section 5, $ 43,616
Stafford, Suzanne; Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, (mostly works on FOIA), $92,341
Stephens, Jennifer; Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $62,467
Thorpe, Nicole; Supervisory Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $119,238
Travett, Rosita; Legal Technician, Section 5, $60,765
Wake, Brittany; Civil Rights Analyst, Section 5, $62,467

Update: an amendment to the Omnibus spending bill has been introduced to eliminate these positions. A floor speech on the House Floor is expected around 7:30 p.m.