Issues ››› Elections
  • In latest DOJ smear, right-wing blogs distort New Black Panther video

    Blog ››› ››› SEAN EASTER

    The right-wing media have made discredited claims about a case of alleged voter intimidation involving two members of the New Black Panther Party at a Philadelphia polling location on election day, 2008, in order to attack the Obama Justice Department as racially biased. In reality, the Obama DOJ obtained an injunction against one individual who was carrying a night stick at the polling location. Charges against the second member at the polling location, the president of the party, and the party itself were dropped due to lack of evidence.

    Now, right-wing blogs are pointing to a video that they claim, falsely, contains footage of the NBPP president admitting to a coordinated plan to intimidate voters. The video appears on Breitbart.tv, headlined "President of New Black Panther Party Admits to Plan to Intimidate Voters," with rollover data reading, "Malik Shabazz incriminates himself in black panther case." The headline of the post on Big Government states, "New Black Panther Party President Admits to Philadelphia Voter Intimidation." The post on Freedom's Lighthouse reads, "In newly uncovered video Malik Shabazz incriminates the Black Panthers by admitting they went to polling stations to intimidate voters." At Gateway Pundit, Jim Hoft wrote: "In a newly discovered home video, Malik Zulu Shabazz states to a crowd of Panther members that the activities that occurred in Philadelphia in Nov '08 were indeed done to intimidate voters."

    These assertions are simply false. In reality, nowhere in the video does Shabazz describe a plan to orchestrate voter intimidation. Instead, he says that the NBPP planned to respond to perceived efforts to prevent "black people from coming to vote." From the video as seen on Breitbart.tv:

    SHABAZZ: We decided that on election day, that we would go out to the polls. Because of what? Because they said they was going to be stopping black people from coming to vote. We knew that they didn't want a black man in office and there were strong intelligence indicators that there was going to be some trouble at the polls and we wanted to make sure the police were not harassing our people, so we wanted to go out and do what we could. [Abrupt video edit] It's just that sometimes the New Black Panther Party, sometimes, whatever we do we just tend to do it kinda strong. You know what I mean? [laughs] Sometimes whatever we do, we just do it, real strong. And sometimes it can even be too black and too strong.

  • Meet the conservative U.S. Commission on Civil Rights


    Media figures have emphasized the fact that the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights is technically "bipartisan" to hype its investigation of the Justice Department's actions in the New Black Panther Party case. In reality, the commission's chair has acknowledged that conservatives "gam[ed] the system" and packed the panel with conservative activists, and the commission's two Democrats, as well as one Republican, have criticized the investigation.

  • Fund won't let go of outdated lawsuit in smear of Obama DOJ


    John Fund continues to promote an outdated lawsuit connected to the Bush-era politicization of the Justice Department to smear the Obama Justice Department as hostile to enforcing voting laws, which he called "outrageous" and "suspiciously like the Black Panther case." But the Justice Department moved to dismiss the case due to outdated evidence.

  • CNN omits GOP criticism of Black Panther investigation

    Blog ››› ››› TODD GREGORY

    The trumped-up allegations that the Obama Justice Department engaged in racially charged "corruption" in its handling of the New Black Panther Party case jumped from Fox News to CNN this morning. Anchor Kyra Phillips hosted Republican activist J. Christian Adams, whom she referred to as a "whistleblower," to repeat his unsubstantiated accusations, which are based on hearsay and charges made by other people.

    One of the on-screen graphics described Adams' allegations as "Voter intimidation scandal at Justice Dept.":

    During the segment, Phillips discussed the Commission on Civil Rights' investigation into the case with Ashley L. Taylor Jr., a Republican member of the commission. Phillips said that the investigation has "divided" the commission and that two commissioners were Democrats. She then read a portion of a statement from Michael Yaki, a Democratic member of commission, that criticized the commission's months-long investigation as "incredibly shallow," "partisan," and "a one-sided farce."

    But Yaki isn't the only member of the commission to criticize its investigation -- Abigail Thernstrom, the Republican vice chair of the panel, has done the same.

  • O'Reilly Factor ludicrously blames Obama for not pressing criminal charges in New Black Panthers case

    ››› ››› MATT GERTZ

    On The O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly and Fox News legal analysts Lis Wiehl and Kimberly Guilfoyle criticized President Obama's administration for not pursuing criminal charges against members of the New Black Panther Party. In fact, it was the Justice Department under President Bush that decided not to pursue criminal charges in the case.

  • Former DOJ Voting Section chief calls Adams "Exhibit A of the type of people hired by Bradley Schlozman"

    Blog ››› ››› MATT MCLAUGHLIN

    As viewers watch Fox News dishonestly hype GOP activist J. Christian Adams' unsubstantiated accusation that the Justice Department under president Obama engaged in racially charged corruption, they should know that Adams reportedly was hired by Bradley Schlozman, a Bush-era political appointee who was found to have inappropriately considered political affiliation when hiring career attorneys.

    A post today on the legal news website Main Justice reported that Joseph Rich, the former chief of the Civil Rights Division's Voting Section, confirmed that Adams was hired by "Bradley Schlozman, who was then a deputy assistant attorney general and later became acting assistant attorney general of the Civil Rights Division." Rich reportedly called Adams "exhibit A of the type of people hired by Bradley Schlozman."

    A July 2008 report from the Department of Justice Inspector General's Office and the Office of Professional Responsibility concluded that Schlozman "considered political and ideological affiliations when hiring and taking other personnel actions relating to career attorneys in violation of Department policy and federal law." The report also concluded:

    The evidence in our investigation showed that Schlozman, first as a Deputy Assistant Attorney General and subsequently as Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General and Acting Assistant Attorney General, considered political and ideological affiliations in hiring career attorneys and in other personnel actions affecting career attorneys in the Civil Rights Division. In doing so, he violated federal law -- the Civil Service Reform Act -- and Department policy that prohibit discrimination in federal employment based on political and ideological affiliations, and committed misconduct. The evidence also showed that Division managers failed to exercise sufficient oversight to ensure that Schlozman did not engage in inappropriate hiring and personnel practices. Moreover, Schlozman made false statements about whether he considered political and ideological affiliations when he gave sworn testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee and in his written responses to supplemental questions from the Committee.

  • Doocy falsely claims DOJ "has not explained" decision in New Black Panther Party case

    ››› ››› TOM ALLISON

    Steve Doocy falsely claimed that the Justice Department "still has not explained why they dropped the case" against members of the New Black Panther Party. However, Assistant Attorney General Tom Perez testified that a "default judgment was sought and obtained" against a defendant carrying a nightstick and that DOJ attorneys concluded that "the evidence did not support" additional charges.