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Black panthers intimidating voters philadelphia

Just about a year ago, a controversy was making it’s way through the conservative blogosphere that arose out of an incident at a Philadelphia, PA voting place on Election Day 2008 where two men representing something called the “New Black Panther Party”” were standing outside purporting to intimidate voters while a Fox News Channel camera recorded the whole thing. Commission on Civil Rights where Abigail Thernstrom, a Republican member of the Commission, called the case “small potatoes” while others on the right attempted to turn it into a huge scandal.

The incident was investigated by the Department of Justice and, before Barack Obama became President, the decision was made not to pursue criminal charges in the matter. The controversy mostly died out when the Summer of 2010 ended and people began focusing on the election, but Rick Hasen at Election Law Blog notes that there was a final report issued by the DOJ back in March and it turns out that the whole story really was much ado about nothing: (1) the original NBPP controversy really was small potatoes, as Abby Thernstrom and Jonathan Adler concluded.

This was a tiny incident in a single polling place about which there was not proof of a single intimidated voter.

(3) Whether we should call DOJ’s subsequent actions a “cover-up” as Jonathan says or not, DOJ certainly did a very poor job explaining its actions.

And it is only from the OPR report that one can get a clear sense as to the bona fide dispute among those at DOJ over how to handle the case.

(4) The decision of how to handle the controversy does provide a window into the shift between the Bush and Obama administrations over how to handle claims of voting rights violations against non-minority voters. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The Beltway, The Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook Was I wrong before, or does Pennsylvania election law allow electioneering within 10 feet of the door?

The DOJ has limited resources and needs to prioritize. No, I didn’t much care for King Minister Shamik Shabazz, aka Maurice Heath, standing around by the door. Relying upon a leftist blog that uses leftist sources to confirm your left leaning biases?

Cases like NBPP and the case in Mississippi (as well as NVRA cases requiring cleaning up of voter rolls) were of greater priority to the Bush Administration than to the Obama administration. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J. Yeah, in the grand scheme of things the number of voters at that one polling place that may have been intimidated is miniscule compared to the total votes cast in Philly and Penn.

Black panthers intimidating voters philadelphia

(5) Some on the right hoped to use the controversy over NBPP to paint the Obama DOJ as politicized and to make a scandal out of a legitimate difference in opinion over DOJ prosecutorial priorities and prosecutorial discretion. However, what those two NBP members were doing is clearly proscribed.

I was amazed to learn that FOX News had 95 segments on the NBPP issue in little over a two week period. Christian Adams, Big Government, Hans von Spakovsky, and Pajamas Media-along with the Republican-leaning commissioners on the Civil Rights Commission (aside from Thernstrom)—sought to make as much political hay out of the incident as they could. But it is good that you reveal that you are willing to accept the subjugation of law to politics, or rather to the right political party.

It will be remembered the next time you start wailing when some clear, but “small potato” violation is ignored by legal arm of any GOP administration.

It’s always quite amusing (not to mention delusional) whenever anyone accuses Doug, of all people, of being a leftist in anyway…there are many others who would beg to differ with this faulty accusation…

You are right, Doug is not a leftist; he is left leaning.

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