December 22, 2011
Today, PJ Media breaks a bombshell that an employee in the federal Department of Justice (DOJ) Voting Section, where I used to work, has admitted to lying three times under penalty of perjury during a DOJ Inspector General’s investigation.
The revelation may well affect congressional redistricting, because of the key role Voting Section staff play in approving state legislative plans, including the staffer in question.
For example, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott might use these allegations of perjury involving Texas redistricting to fight the ongoing redistricting litigation. Impeachment of a different sort–that of a testifying witness–is his for the taking.
The wide ranging DOJ Inspector General investigation is examining the harassment of conservative leaning DOJ employees who were willing to enforce civil rights laws equally against all wrongdoers, such as the New Black Panther party. You read that right–the harassment of employees who were willing to enforce the law against the New Black Panther Party.
The particulars of the DOJ perjury, as reported by Has von Spakovsky at PJ Media, are even more troubling. They involve the leaking of internal memos about Congressional redistricting to theWashington Post by leftist DOJ staff who hoped to hurt the Bush administration. The current Texas redistricting plans are being litigated in both San Antonio and Washington D.C. courtrooms.
Von Spakovsky reports:
The genesis of Ms. Gyamfi’s perjury is apparently rooted in political attacks on the Bush Justice Department. Throughout 2005-2007, numerous attorney-client privileged documents, confidential personnel information, and other sensitive legal materials were leaked from inside the Voting Section to the Washington Post and various left-wing blogs. One of the most prominent leaks involved the Voting Section’s privileged, internal analysis of the 2003 Texas congressional redistricting plan, which had been submitted to the Civil Rights Division in October 2003 by the State of Texas for review under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. As many readers may recall, the contents of the Voting Section’s internal memorandum appeared on the front page of the Washington Post on December 2, 2005, to great fanfare from Democrats on Capitol Hill and their surrogates in the liberal blogosphere.
The story from deep inside DOJ reported by von Spakovsky grows even more tragic:
According to numerous sources, Ms. Gyamfi had been asked in two separate interviews whether she was involved in the leaking of confidential and privileged information out of the Voting Section. Each time, she flatly denied any knowledge as to who was responsible for the leaks. In a third interview, she was once again questioned about her role in the leaks. At first, she adamantly denied involvement. Then, however, she was confronted with e-mail documents rebutting her testimony.
At that point, she immediately broke down and confessed that she had lied to the investigators three separate times. Since IG interviewees are all required to take an oath to tell the truth upon penalty of perjury, and investigators record all interviews, an audio recording of these admissions must exist in the IG files. Mind you, Ms. Gyamfi did not say she misunderstood the questions. She did not claim to have forgotten something and later remembered it. Instead, she plainly admitted her deceit and ascribed her motive to attempting to protect the “other people” involved, i.e., the other career staff (mostly attorneys) who also violated their oaths of office and their professional obligations by publicizing confidential legal opinions and analyses.
No matter your political stripes, this story is a tragedy, both for the people involved as well as the institutions most Americans once assumed they could trust. And what of the people managing the Voting Section, such as Assistant Attorney General Tom Perez? What of Deputy Assistant Attorney General Matthew Colangelo, formerly of the NAACP? He oversees these employees. What has he done in response?
We can speculate: probably nothing, if they are following Holder’s lead.
The manipulations of Holder’s DOJ range from the mundane to the sinister. On the mundane side, I watched Holder tell Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.) in a hearing that the DOJ had not provided preferential treatment in Freedom of Information Act requests to favored left wing groups, or failed to respond to FOIA requests from conservatives and Republicans. Holder explained the delay in responding to requests by conservatives as the result of those requests being contained in more complicated files, which I knew to be false.
On the sinister side, there is the Fast and Furious program. Sinister is the only way rational people, who are not in the tank for this administration, can describe a program to flood Mexico illegally with thousands of firearms just to see what happens. As one person after another after another was gunned down, the DOJ-managed gun flood kept pace–even after American blood was spilled.
And where is Holder’s outrage? Who has he fired for this bloodbath?
Nowhere and nobody, because his closest aides–his buddies, like Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer and Chief of Staff Gary Grindler–are knee deep in Fast and Furious. And Holder has the audacity to criticize his critics!
When Holder is run out of office by suddenly courageous Congressional Republicans–or, more likely, by a White House that understands the damage that would follow if they tried–it will be interesting to see where he lands. Will Big Law welcome him back with open arms at his old firm, Covington and Burling? Or will Holder be treated as he deserves to be treated? I’ll bet on the former.
Assistant Attorney General Ron Weich also contributes to the problem at DOJ. He authored a letter to Congress about Fast and Furious which was false. Weich previously submitted another false letter to Congress on July 13, 2009, regarding the dismissal of the New Black Panther case. In it, he told Congress that the voter intimidation case against one Panther had been dismissed because the defendant “was a resident of the apartment building where the polling place was located.” That was blatantly false. The Panther in question did not live in the building. As in Fast and Furious, the Weich letter had to be retracted because Weich didn’t tell Congress the truth.
Memo to Congress: Article II, Section 4 of the Constitution applies to Weich. Use it. He would likely be gone in a fortnight.