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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-27-11 01:22 PM
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New White House Picks (Almost) Rebalance Civil Rights Commission

New White House Picks (Almost) Rebalance Civil Rights Commission

Ryan J. Reilly

President Barack Obama on Wednesday appointed two new commissioners to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, a federal agency best know recently for its partisan focus on investigating the New Black Panther Party voter intimidation case. The White House's move will rebalance what was intended to be a bipartisan panel which came under conservative control thanks to a move during the Bush administration to "game" the system.

Obama's appointees to the Commission are Roberta Achtenberg, a former Clinton administration official and a co-founder of the National Center for Lesbian Rights, and Marty R. Castro, the president of a strategic planning company who chairs the Illinois Human Rights Commission and sits on several human rights organizations.

<...>

Right now, the balance on the commission is three Democratic appointees versus four essentially Republican appointees (two of whom are actually "independents"), with another position unfilled. Once House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) formally reappoints Commissioner Michael Yaki, the even balance will be restored. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) sent Yaki's papers to Boehner's office in early January, but Boehner's office didn't immediately say when Yaki would be reappointed.

The Bush administration stacked the commission with conservatives by having two of the commissioners switch their affiliation from Republican to independent. The move, said the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel, was legal. But it was also, as former Commission Chairman Gerald Reynolds (a Republican appointee) acknowledged, intended to "game" the system. The scheme unfolded in 2004, and the panel has since focused on racism against white people and claimed that measures intended to aid minority groups are discriminatory. More recently, they've opened up debate on their existence.

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bluestateguy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-27-11 01:46 PM
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1. I would have liked to have seen him bring back Mary Frances Berry
She shredded Katherine Harris back in the election 2000 hearings.
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SpartanDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-27-11 03:31 PM
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2. K&R
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