Thursday, March 14, 2013

Possible Labor Sec'y pick has ties to New Black Panther voting intimidation case dismissal

Five years on Election Day ago a group of New Black Panther stood in front of a Philadelphia polling place--one appeared to be holding a billy club. After Obama was sworn into office--the charges were mysteriously dismissed. A leading figure in that debacle might become the next Labor Secretary.

From Politico:
A scathing new report exposing bitter divisions and racial hostility at the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division is certain to complicate the confirmation process for Tom Perez, who currently heads the unit and is expected to be President Barack Obama’s pick as the next Secretary of Labor.

The 258-page internal watchdog report out Tuesday resurrects questions about the handling of the controversial New Black Panther Party prosecution and faults Perez for giving misleading public testimony in 2010 when he said political appointees were not involved in decisions about the case. He stands by the accuracy of his statement.

More broadly, the report charges that leaders in the division Perez heads have failed to do enough to overcome years of poisonous strife between a faction of the voting rights staff which favored litigation on behalf of minority groups and another which believed the department should do more to protect the rights of white voters.
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