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Archive for July 10th, 2010

“We have no interest in enforcing this provision of the law [requiring states to expunge dead or inactive voters from active voting lists]. It has nothing to do with increasing turnout, and we are just not going to do it.”—Julie Fernandes, Deputy Assistant Attorney General

The 1993 Motor Voter Act requires states to make sure that dead people, felons, and people who have moved out of a district are not listed on active voting rolls. According to former DoJ lawyer and whistleblower J. Christian Adams, Brother O’s Bread and Circuses administration told DoJ staff not to enforce that part of the law.

Adams writes that last November political appointee Deputy Assistant Attorney General Julie Fernandes announced to members of DOJ’s Voting Section that they would not be enforcing a provision of federal law designed to bring integrity to elections.

Since the November announcement, DOJ has not filed a single case regarding the Motor Voter provision. In addition, Attorney General Eric Holder dismissed a case started by the George W. Bush administration where many districts in Missouri have more voters than people old enough to vote.

I.M. Kane


 

Lawlessness at the DOJ: Voting Section Told Not To Enforce Purging the Dead or Ineligible from Voting Rolls

By J. Christian Adams

I was at the Voting Section of the Justice Department for over five years. This office is responsible for enforcing most federal election laws which do not involve criminal matters. My previous articles at Pajamas Media have spoken of the DOJ’s lawless abandonment of race-neutral enforcement of voting laws, and other outrageous conduct. I will continue to publish here at Pajamas Media more instances of failure to enforce the law equally by the Department.

One such instance relates to the Motor Voter law, and will shock Americans who care about integrity in the electoral process.

The “Motor Voter” law was passed in 1993 to promote greater voter registration in the United States. It did this — most Americans now know from visits to the DMV — by requiring states to offer voter registration materials whenever someone had contact with a variety of state offices. These included welfare offices, social service agencies, and motor vehicle departments.

A lesser-known provision also obliged the states to ensure that no ineligible voters were on the rolls — including dead people, felons, and people who had moved. Our current Department of Justice is anxious to encourage the obligations to get everyone registered, but explicitly unwilling to enforce federal law requiring states to remove the dead or ineligible from the rolls.

In November 2009, the entire Voting Section was invited to a meeting with Deputy Assistant Attorney General Julie Fernandes, a political employee serving at the pleasure of the attorney general. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss Motor Voter enforcement decisions.

The room was packed with dozens of Voting Section employees when she made her announcement regarding the provisions related to voter list integrity:

We have no interest in enforcing this provision of the law. It has nothing to do with increasing turnout, and we are just not going to do it.

Jaws dropped around the room.

It is one thing to silently adopt a lawless policy of refusing to enforce a provision of federal law designed to bring integrity to elections. It is quite another to announce the lawlessness to a room full of people who have sworn an oath to fairly enforce the law.

Worse yet, it is a broken campaign promise by Barack Obama, and I’m sure he would not be happy to have heard the announcement. After all, his Assistant Attorney General Tom Perez has been traveling around the country bashing the Bush-era Department of Justice. Perez says as often as he can:

Those who had been entrusted with the keys to the division treated it like a buffet line at the cafeteria, cherry-picking which laws to enforce.

Yet at this meeting, Ms. Fernandes openly relished her time at the buffet line in the Voting Section cafeteria.

The problem with this sort of lawlessness, apart from the fact that it is becoming a trend in this administration, is that it nullifies the important compromise that Congress reached in 1993. Greater access to registration came by turning welfare agencies into voter registration offices, but the law also included provisions to ensure greater integrity. It is a dangerous development for our electoral system when one part of that compromise is tossed overboard by a bureaucrat.

It will be impossible for this purportedly transparent administration to deny this direction was given. There were dozens of good people in the room that I know care more about the truth than about saving Ms. Fernandes’ career.

Plus, the cases the Justice Department has brought — or not brought — corroborate the account: the Department has not filed a single case under the Motor Voter provision where there are problems.

Are there problems with list integrity? Yes, but that’s a story for another article. Even worse than not bringing cases, the Holder Justice Department has dismissed a case against Missouri that the previous administration had started. In many places in Missouri, there are more voters than humans with a heartbeat old enough to vote. Instead of fully litigating the case to a favorable outcome, the DOJ made it go away, nicely, quietly, completely. Sound familiar?

The blame-Bush instincts of this administration will no doubt lead to talk about all the cases the Bush DOJ didn’t bring to open up public welfare agencies to voter registration. Good luck. I’d suggest citizens go online and see the Section 7 NVRA, or “Motor Voter,” cases that were commenced under the Bush administration. Bush brought voter registration cases under Motor Voter against Arizona and Illinois.

This Justice Department, in contrast, has “cherry picked” which parts of Motor Voter law they will enforce. You wouldn’t think it has anything to do with politics or the upcoming elections, would you?

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The last seven years that the Democrats have controlled both houses of Congress are 1992 to 1995, and 2008 to 2010. The last seven years that the Republicans have controlled both houses are 1999 to 2001, and 2004 to 2007. …

During the most recent seven years that the Democrats have controlled Congress, their deficits have averaged $619 billion a year, or 5.3% of the gross domestic product (GDP). During the most recent seven years that the Republicans have controlled Congress, their deficits have averaged $93 billion a year, or 0.6% of GDP. Over their entire seven-year spans, the Democrats’ deficit spending has totaled $4.3 trillion, the Republicans’ $651 billion.

Over the 14 years in question, the four highest deficits as a percentage of GDP have all occurred when the Democrats have controlled Congress. The five lowest have all occurred when the Republicans have controlled Congress. …

And none of this counts the 2011 budget. If the Democratic Congress passes a budget similar to what President Obama has proposed, it will increase deficits by another $1.3 trillion, or 8.3% of GDP (even with growth in GDP projected at a healthy 4.6%). That’s 14 times the average deficit under Republican control of Congress.

President Obama … will post more deficit spending in his first two years than any other president in U.S. history has posted in eight —Jeffrey H. Anderson 


 

Both Parties Bear Part Of Deficit, But Dems’ Is Quadruple The GOP’s

By Jeffrey H. Anderson

American voters have expressed strong opposition to the Democrats’ proposed health care overhaul, and clear concerns about rampant deficits.

Yet, the Democrats seem to be poised to use the “budget reconciliation” process not to reduce deficits (as that process is intended to be used), but instead to try to pass their health care overhaul — which, in turn, would almost certainly raise deficits, probably by hundreds of billions.

The Democrats, however, don’t hold a monopoly on fiscal irresponsibility. As Alexander Hamilton wrote, Congress “commands the purse.” And both Democrats and Republicans have controlled Congress in recent years, during which time our national debt has skyrocketed.

When Ross Perot got 19% of the presidential vote in 1992 on the strength of his anti-deficit message, our national debt was $4 trillion. It’s now about $12 trillion. Clearly, both parties share the blame for our casual deficit spending and frightening debt. But do they share it equally?

The last seven years that the Democrats have controlled both houses of Congress are 1992 to 1995, and 2008 to 2010. The last seven years that the Republicans have controlled both houses are 1999 to 2001, and 2004 to 2007.

During these respective seven-year stretches, each party has been paired with a Republican president for four years (George Bush or George W. Bush) and a Democratic president for three years (three with Clinton for the GOP, two with Clinton and one with Obama for the Democrats).

So, how has each party fared at keeping deficit spending in check?

During the most recent seven years that the Democrats have controlled Congress, their deficits have averaged $619 billion a year, or 5.3% of the gross domestic product (GDP). During the most recent seven years that the Republicans have controlled Congress, their deficits have averaged $93 billion a year, or 0.6% of GDP. Over their entire seven-year spans, the Democrats’ deficit spending has totaled $4.3 trillion, the Republicans’ $651 billion.

Over the 14 years in question, the four highest deficits as a percentage of GDP have all occurred when the Democrats have controlled Congress. The five lowest have all occurred when the Republicans have controlled Congress.

The Republicans’ highest deficit (3.6% of GDP) has been lower than the Democrats’ average deficit (5.3%), and the Democrats’ lowest deficit (2.2% of GDP) has more than doubled the Republicans’ average deficit (0.8%).

Some of the disparity between the two parties’ records is likely attributable to economic variations. Over each party’s respective seven-year periods, GDP growth has averaged 3.8% under Democratic control and 5.7% under Republican control.

Leaving aside any question of whether Republican policies may have contributed to this greater economic prosperity, how much does this gap in economic well-being account for the disparity in deficits?

If one were to drop the two worst economic years (2009 and 2010) from the Democrats’ tally, while dropping the two best economic years (2000 and 2005) from the Republicans’ tally, the economic disparity would nearly disappear.

The average growth in GDP would then be 5.1% when the Democrats have controlled Congress and 5.4% when the Republicans have. Furthermore, each party would then have been paired with a Republican president for three years (one of the Bushes) and with President Clinton for two.

Under these nearly identical conditions, the Democrats’ deficits for the remaining five years have averaged 3.4% of GDP, while the Republicans’ have averaged 0.8% of GDP. In other words, even after throwing out the Democrats’ two worst economic years and the Republicans’ two best, Democratic deficits have still more than quadrupled those of the Republicans.

And none of this counts the 2011 budget. If the Democratic Congress passes a budget similar to what President Obama has proposed, it will increase deficits by another $1.3 trillion, or 8.3% of GDP (even with growth in GDP projected at a healthy 4.6%). That’s 14 times the average deficit under Republican control of Congress.

The simple truth is this: If you take all of the deficits accumulated over the last seven years in which the Democrats and Republicans, respectively, have controlled Congress (14 years in total), $8.70 out of every $10 in deficit spending has been racked up by a Democratic Congress, $1.30 by a Republican Congress.

President Obama, who according to White House figures will post more deficit spending in his first two years than any other president in U.S. history has posted in eight, said last week that “my administration is doing what families and businesses all across the country are doing during these difficult times — we’re tightening our belts.”

This statement was made the day before he argued at the “health summit” that we need to pass his health care overhaul, which would launch $2.5 trillion in new federal spending in its real first decade alone.

In truth, evidence of belt-tightening in Washington has proven to be quite elusive — especially when the Democratic Party has been in control of the purse strings.

Anderson was the senior speechwriter for Secretary Mike Leavitt at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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It is outright hypocrisy that the Justice Department under Attorney General Holder is suing a sovereign American State, yet dismissing this heinous violation of our Constitution – the right to vote.

The recent comments and actions of the New Black Panther Party are despicable, disgusting, and completely reprehensible. … [T]his racist and extremist group … is anathema to the principles and values that make America a great Nation.

[During the campaign] I have been called many things by some black Americans – token, Uncle Tom, sellout, oreo [sic] cookie, and many others. And the so-called leaders of the black movement – mainly those in the Congressional Black Caucus – have remained silent in their condemnation of these race-baiting critics.—Allen West


 

Statement on New Black Panther Party

By Allen West

The recent decision by the Obama Justice Department to drop all charges of voter intimidation against the New Black Panther Party during the 2008 Election represents a sad day for all Americans. For an Administration that promised a new era in race relations, Obama and the Democrats in Congress have demonstrated that race will continually be exploited for political gain. It is outright hypocrisy that the Justice Department under Attorney General Holder is suing a sovereign American State, yet dismissing this heinous violation of our Constitution – the right to vote.

Throughout history, the Democrat party has been the standard bearer of voter intimidation in America – only this time the once victim is now the perpetrator.

The recent comments and actions of the New Black Panther Party are despicable, disgusting, and completely reprehensible. It is with no reservation that I make a formal condemnation of this racist and extremist group, which is anathema to the principles and values that make America a great Nation. For those who would define our country as a “nation of cowards,” or who feel the United States is neither great nor exceptional, and to any other racist and extremist groups, feel free to show yourselves the door.

As a young black man who grew up in the inner city of Atlanta, my Mom and Dad taught me that which is presented in the Declaration of Independence – that all men are created equal. I was taught – and I have taught my children – that there is no such thing as an African American or Black American, only American. That there is only one true race – the Human race. That the only colors that matter in this country are Red, White and Blue. That, as a Constitutional Republic, the rule of law is paramount in binding us as a Nation.

Throughout our Congressional campaign’s endeavor to restore honor, integrity, and character to the US House of Representatives, I have been called many things by some black Americans – token, Uncle Tom, sellout, oreo [sic] cookie, and many others. And the so-called leaders of the black movement – mainly those in the Congressional Black Caucus – have remained silent in their condemnation of these race-baiting critics.

The dye has been cast in this election cycle – Democrats and their liberal progressive socialist allies will continue to play the race card when it is politically expedient. I demand an investigation of the New Black Panther Party and the placement of it, along with any extremist group, onto the Terrorist Watch List if warranted. If that it [sic] not done prior to my taking the oath of office as a United States Congressman, it will happen soon thereafter.

Allen West is the Republican candidate for Congress in Florida‘s 22nd Congressional District.

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