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Monday, March 21, 2011

Racial Politics at the DOJ: Loretta King Profile

You can get an idea of how truly controversial the New Black Panther Party voting rights case is when you consider it began on the day of Barack Obama's election in 2008. So many news events have come and gone since then. Yet, that case never quite goes away. Anyone who argues that racial politics wasn't involved is simply in denial or pushing an agenda. We even saw sworn testimony from a Voting rights section attorney that resigned in order to do as well as his boss, who had been re-assigned to prevent him from testifying. J. Christian Adams and Christopher Coates both testified and one person that came off looking extremely race-based was Assistant Attorney General, Loretta King.

As if the NBPP case wasn't controversial enough for the Justice Department, a recent mandate handed down from the Department to the City of Dayton stirred the racial pot some more.

Via the Daily Caller:
Neck-deep in the more divisive civil rights cases of the past several years — most notably the New Black Panther voter intimidation case and the recent Dayton, Ohio police department’s testing standards issue — the Obama appointed assistant attorney general has many wondering whether her guide is the law or racial politics.

“Some of the most outlandish policies of the Holder Justice Department over the last two years flow directly from Loretta King’s worldview,” J. Christian Adams, who worked with King while serving as a voting rights attorney at the Justice Department, told The Daily Caller.

According to Adams, race-based decision making has been a consistent staple of King’s actions and resume.

In testimony before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights about the New Black Panther case, former DOJ Voting Rights Section chief Christopher Coates explained that King ordered him to stop asking trial attorney applicants whether they would have a problem dealing with cases involving white victims.

“In the spring of 2009, Ms. King, who had by then been appointed Acting AAG [assistant attorney general] for Civil Rights by the Obama Administration, called me to her office and specifically instructed me that I was not to ask any other applicants whether they would be willing to, in effect, race-neutrally enforce the VRA [Voting Rights Act],” he testified. “Ms. King took offense that I was asking such a question of job applicants and directed me not to ask it because she does not support equal enforcement of the provisions of the VRA.”
Additionally, King is currently leading an effort in New York that ignores a recent Supreme Court decision:
In New York, King is currently the lead attorney in an effort to disregard low test scores to allow more minority candidates to become firefighters. The effort, as some have pointed out, disregards the 2009 New Haven firefighter case, Ricci v. DeStefano. In that case, the Supreme Court ruled that objective test results could not be thrown out merely to meet a desired racial outcome.
Though far too early to tell, if Loretta King becomes the face that represents racial politics in the DOJ, it's at least theoretically possible she may find herself under the Obama bus one day, especially in light of the consistent attention being paid to a Justice Department that is so fixated on race.

Read more here.

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