Republicans Block Apppointment for DOJ Civil Rights
Seven Democrats joined Republicans today to defeat the nomination of Debo Adegbile to head DOJ's civil rights division. The objection was that when head of the Legal Defense Fund, the group had filed briefs in support of overturning the death sentence of Mumia Abu-Jamal based on improper jury instructions. Two appellate courts ruled the jury instructions were erroneous and Abu-Jamal's death sentence was overturned. He was resentenced to life in prison. Adegbile's involvement in the case came after the Legal Defense Fund had taken the case.
"The fact that his nomination was defeated solely based on his legal representation of a defendant runs contrary to a fundamental principle of our system of justice -- and those who voted against his nomination denied the American people an outstanding public servant."
The vote was 47-52. Veep Biden was present in case he needed to break a tie vote, but with the Democrats crossing over, it wasn't necessary.
Law enforcement groups lobbied heavily against the nomination.
My view: This is just another example of the country's misguided over-glorification of crime-fighters. Shame on those Democrats who voted against Adegbile, especially Bob Casey of PA. [More...]
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