It’s Not A Crime, It’s Effective Community Organizing!

There’s nothing to see here, move along!



Can we all now wear paramilitary uniforms and stand in front of polling places on election day, brandishing deadly weapons and harassing voters who look likely to vote for the opposing candidate?

Charges Against ‘New Black Panthers’ Dropped by Obama Justice Dept.

Charges brought against three members of the New Black Panther Party for Self-Defense under the Bush administration have been dropped by the Obama Justice Department, FOX News has learned.

The charges stemmed from an incident at a Philadelphia polling place on Election Day 2008 when three members of the party were accused of trying to threaten voters and block poll and campaign workers by the threat of force — one even brandishing what prosecutors call a deadly weapon.

The three black panthers, Minister King Samir Shabazz, Malik Zulu Shabazz and Jerry Jackson were charged in a civil complaint in the final days of the Bush administration with violating the voter rights act by using coercion, threats and intimidation. Shabazz allegedly held a nightstick or baton that prosecutors said he pointed at people and menacingly tapped it. Prosecutors also say he “supports racially motivated violence against non-blacks and Jews.”

The Obama administration won the case last month, but moved to dismiss the charges on May 15.

The complaint says the men hurled racial slurs at both blacks and whites.

A poll watcher who provided an affidavit to prosecutors in the case noted that Bartle Bull, who worked as a civil rights lawyer in the south in the 1960’s and is a former campaign manager for Robert Kennedy, said it was the most blatant form of voter intimidation he had ever seen.

In his affidavit, obtained by FOX News, Bull wrote “I watched the two uniformed men confront voters and attempt to intimidate voters. They were positioned in a location that forced every voter to pass in close proximity to them. The weapon was openly displayed and brandished in plain sight of voters.”

He also said they tried to “interfere with the work of other poll observers … whom the uniformed men apparently believed did not share their preferences politically,” noting that one of the panthers turned toward the white poll observers and said “you are about to be ruled by the black man, cracker.”

A spokesman for the Department of Justice told FOX News, “The Justice Department was successful in obtaining an injunction that prohibits the defendant who brandished a weapon outside a Philadelphia polling place from doing so again. Claims were dismissed against the other defendants based on a careful assessment of the facts and the law. The department is committed to the vigorous prosecution of those who intimidate, threaten or coerce anyone exercising his or her sacred right to vote.”

Dept. Of Justice Drops New Black Panthers Case

Sources told The Bulletin that there is internal dissension in the Department of Justice (DOJ) about a voter intimidation case from last year’s presidential election. Obama appointees did not want to proceed with the case, while the career prosecutors did. The incident occurred in Philadelphia and involved the New Black Panther Party for Self-Defense (NBPPSD).

The DOJ filed a lawsuit under the Voting Rights Act against the NBPPSD and three of its members alleging the defendants intimidated Philadelphia voters during the Nov. 4, 2008 general election. The action was filed in January before President George W. Bush left office.

The complaint, filed in the United States District Court in Philadelphia, alleged that on Election Day, Nov. 4, 2008 in Philadelphia, NBPPSD members Samir Shabazz and Jerry Jackson were stationed at the entrance to a polling location at 1221 Fairmount Avenue, wearing the uniform of the organization. It also states Mr. Shabazz repeatedly brandished a “police-style baton weapon.”

The complaint said NBPPSD Chairman Malik Zulu Shabazz confirmed that the placement of Messrs. Shabazz and Jackson was part of a nationwide effort to deploy NBPPSD members at polling locations on Election Day. The Justice Department sought an injunction to prevent any similar future actions by NBPPSD members at polling locations.

“Intimidation outside of a polling place is contrary to the democratic process,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Grace Chung Becker at the time. “The Department takes allegations of voter intimidation seriously.”

None of the defendants responded to the lawsuit. Instead of immediately filing for a default judgment as is the normal procedure, sources told The Bulletin the DOJ asked for and received an order from the court providing an extension of time to file. Specifically, they asked the court to give them until May 15.

But on May 15, DOJ changed its mind again. Rather than a default judgment, the DOJ filed a notice of voluntary dismissal of the lawsuit for two of the defendants. This included Mr. Jackson, who identified himself to police as a member of the Democratic Committee in the 14th Ward. He also produced credentials to that effect.

DOJ only asked for a default judgment against one defendant, Samir Shabazz, which was granted on May 18. But sources say the proposed order for the default judgment asks for none of the usual conditions the Justice Department would want, such as keeping Mr. Shabazz away from any polling locations for a set number of years into the future.

Hans von Spakovsky is a former career Counsel to the Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. He thinks the inaction by the Justice Department is unprecedented. He told The Bulletin that the dismissal by Justice, with no notice on the Justice Department press site, particularly against an organization listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, is a horrible miscarriage of justice. He said DOJ has failed in its duty to enforce voting laws. He is outraged by the action.

“It is absolutely unprecedented for the Justice Department to dismiss a lawsuit after the defendants failed to answer the suit and are thus in default,” he said.

Mr. von Spakovsky said that the NBPPSD’s lack of response was the legal equivalent of an admission of all the allegations made about the defendants’ organized effort to threaten and intimidate voters.

“And dismissing an individual who was a local Democratic party official who defaulted by not answering the complaint smacks of the worst sort of political partisanship,” he said. “It is completely contrary to all of the promises that Eric Holder made when he was confirmed to be Attorney General.”

So, the career prosecutors wanted to proceed with the voter intimidation case but the Obama DOJ political appointees derailed it. Why doesn’t this even surprise me after watching Obama’s Chicago style machine operate for over two years now? It”s like, hey New Black Panthers, thanks for doing your part to help Obama get elected, just don’t do it again, okay? Hell, a wrist slap would have hurt more than a toothless injunction.

/I guess in ObamaWorld, it was just an excellent example of effective community organizing