Every Single One: The Politicized Hiring of Eric Holder’s Criminal Section
All ten new hires to the Justice Department's Criminal Section have far-left resumes -- which were only released following a PJMedia lawsuit. (This is the tenth of a series of articles about the Justice Department's hiring practices since President Obama took office. Read parts one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, and nine.)
September 14, 2011 - 12:00 am
Today marks the latest installment of PJMedia’s multi-part series investigating the politicized hiring practices of the Civil Rights Division at the Obama Justice Department. The series has revealed a liberal litmus test for landing a job in the Civil Rights Division. It took a protracted lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act to extract the resumes of the Division’s newly hired attorneys, and it is not difficult to understand why the Most Transparent Administration in History fought so hard. Naturally, the resumes reveal an undeniable campaign to populate every corner of the Division with left-wing ideologues. Meanwhile, attorneys who don’t demonstrate this ideological zeal aren’t hired.
We turn today to the Criminal Section. This Section is primarily responsible for prosecuting individuals who violate the constitutional rights of individual citizens, hate crimes, and human trafficking offenses. The Section’s prosecutorial reach also extends, however, to criminal violations of the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act as well as the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act.
Like many other parts of the Civil Rights Division during Eric Holder’s reign, the Criminal Section engages in ideologically and racially selective enforcement of the law. For example, although it proudly touts its prosecution of abortion protesters under the FACE Act — it has gone so far as to completely remove any reference to the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act from its website.
While DOJ is suing 79-year-old Dick Retta for “intimidating” people outside an abortion clinic through prayer and pleas to reconsider abortion, the Criminal Section did nothing when Retta was pepper sprayed by an abortion advocate for exercising his First Amendment rights. The Criminal Section could have brought a case against the attacker under 18 U.S.C. § 245, but of course didn’t, because this administration doesn’t care for Mr. Retta’s goals.
While this double standard may outrage many citizens, it comes as little surprise to insiders, who recall that one of the Section’s former deputy chiefs (Cathy Mahoney) only recently left to become legal director of NARAL Pro-Choice America. Today she serves as the general counsel of the National Abortion Federation.
There is racially centric enforcement of hate crimes. When traditional minorities are the victims of hate crimes, the Section — appropriately — responds with gusto. But when the victims of racial violence are white, nothing happens.
When a mob of blacks savagely attacked random whites at the Wisconsin State Fair earlier this summer, the Section did nothing. When a similar riot occurred at the Iowa State Fair in August 2010 — where bands of black teens organized a “beat whitey night” — the Section once again did nothing. Last month, still another flash mob of blacks beating whites took place in Philadelphia, yet the Section did nothing. The same is true near Pittsburgh and in Ohio.
Just like the outrageous dismissal of the New Black Panther Party case, there is a pervasive hostility in this administration to bringing cases on behalf of white victims. Let’s hope the Section reverses course and investigates these attacks, because its apathy, so far, is wrong and immoral.
These examples are only the tip of the iceberg, and I discuss more outrages in my forthcoming book Injustice.
Ten new career attorneys have been hired into the Criminal Section during the Obama presidency. Just as is the case with each of the other eight sections that have been highlighted so far in this PJMedia series — the Voting Section, the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices, the Special Litigation Section, the Education Section, the Employment Litigation Section, the Coordination and Compliance and Section, the Housing and Civil Enforcement Section, and the Disability Rights Section — every single one of these lawyers obviously has little difficulty passing the Division’s liberal litmus test. Here’s the proof:
Chiraag Bains: Mr. Bains joined the Section as part of Attorney General Holder’s Honors Program following clerkships with two of the most liberal jurists in the entire federal judiciary (Karen Nelson Moore of the Sixth Circuit and Nancy Gertner of the District of Massachusetts). During law school, he worked for Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) on the Senate Judiciary Committee. There he pushed the politically motivated investigation into the dismissal of various appointed U.S. attorneys who served at the pleasure of the president. He also worked for the left-wing Vera Institute of Justice, where he wrote a report criticizing the conditions of confinement at supermax prisons for the most dangerous criminals.
One law school summer, he helped organize what was billed as the “Inequality Summer Institute.” The event’s publication summarized his cliché-filled background as follows:
In New Haven, he works with People Against Injustice, a group fighting for fair bail in the city’s courts, and the Juvenile Rights Advocacy Project, which aims to educate high school students about their rights in interactions with police. He has also just finished his tenure as Editor of the Yale Journal of Human Rights and Type Magazine, Yale’s publication on race and class. Chiraag has worked for the Department of Justice on racial conflict mediation and has helped create a worker-run factory in India to reduce child labor in the brass industry. This summer, he will work on housing issues in Bridgeport, Connecticut. A 2002 Truman Scholar, he plans to become a civil rights lawyer and fight discrimination in law enforcement.
Meanwhile, as an undergraduate, he interned at the liberal Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, where he co-wrote a guide to assist convicted felons in gaining the right to vote. He also worked with the SEIU local chapter, and was an active member of Amnesty International. Little wonder that he won a Soros Fellowship for New Americans, upon which he described his dream of pursuing a career in “human rights and distributive justice.”
A perfect fit for the Civil Rights Division under Eric Holder.
Tona Boyd: Ms. Boyd is another Honors Program hire. Before joining the Section following a clerkship with the ultra-liberal Roger Gregory of the Fourth Circuit (who, as many readers will recall, received a recess appointment from President Clinton and was later nominated by President Bush as an unreciprocated olive branch to Democrats in an effort to reach détente in the judicial nominations war), she interned for the ACLU National Racial Justice Project, served as the Racial Justice Chair of the Black Law Students Association, and co-chaired the Jena Six Symposium Conference at Harvard Law School, the contents of which must be seen to be believed (e.g., “Suvall advocated a restorative justice model for school discipline”).
In addition to these activities, Ms. Boyd was a member of the executive board of the ACLU, was elected vice-president of the Harvard Law School Democrats, and served on the Executive Board of the Harvard chapter of the liberal American Constitution Society. While serving as an editor of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review, she wrote an article titled “Confronting Racial Disparity: Legislative Responses to the School-to-Prison Pipeline,” in which she argued that tough law enforcement policies against violent youth should be abandoned, because they tend to “cast too wide a net, failing to differentiate between gangs and other group criminal activity, and could exacerbate the problem of disproportionate minority contact.”
The current Civil Rights Division, with its open embrace of racially selective law enforcement, must be nirvana.
Cindy Chung: Ms. Chung had some experience as an assistant district attorney prior to joining the Criminal Section, but it was no doubt her active membership in the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund and clerkship for the extremely liberal Judge Myron Thompson that really impressed Civil Rights Division hiring officials. Or perhaps it was her service as managing editor of the Columbia Journal of Gender and Law, which describes its mission as “publish[ing] interdisciplinary works related to feminism and gender-related issues with the aim of promoting dialogue, debate, and awareness around an expansive view of feminism embracing women and men of different colors, classes, sexual orientations, and cultures.” Either way, Ms. Chung demonstrates how the liberal litmus test lands six-figure jobs in a depressed lawyer job market.
Fara Gold: Characterized by her law school alumni magazine as an “idealist, in and out” who successfully avoided becoming a “realist” during law school, Ms. Gold arrived in the Section after working as a sex crimes prosecutor in Florida. During her undergraduate days, she worked as a counselor at a rape crisis center in Georgia and vowed thereafter to spend her life helping victims. She writes that she contemplated going into social work but ultimately felt that she could assist victims more effectively as a prosecutor.
Henry Leventis: Mr. Leventis joined the Section after serving as the New Hampshire regional field director for Democratic Senator Chris Dodd’s 2008 presidential campaign.
Carroll McCabe: Ms. McCabe was hired into the Section after spending her entire career as a personal injury and criminal defense attorney, concentrating the bulk of her time representing murderers facing the death penalty. Although a number of her community activities have been conspicuously redacted from her resume by the Department of Justice, her capital defense practice as well as her membership in both the American Trial Lawyers Association and the Organization of Hispanics and Latin Americans of Anne Arundel County on her resume served as the ticket to admission.
Saeed Mody: Mr. Mody is another liberal activist hired into the Section as a career civil servant. While a law student at the University of Texas-Austin, he served as vice-president of the Muslim Student Lawyers Association and worked in the criminal defense clinic. He also clerked for the Texas Civil Rights Project, where he assisted the NAACP in suing the Austin Police Department for alleged brutality. Any law enforcement official who is interviewed by Mr. Mody should bear that fact in mind next time he claims he is just interested in getting at the truth.
As an undergraduate at UT-Austin, he served as co-chair of the campus Palestine Solidarity Committee.
Ryan Murguia: Mr. Murguia joined the Section straight out of law school as part of the attorney general’s Honors Program. But he has an impressive partisan and Democratic pedigree. Most prominently, he headed the Illinois chapter of Young Latino Professionals for Obama in 2008. He also received scholarships from the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF) as well as the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. Needless to say, those awards are not given to conservatives.
Mr. Murguia also comes from a very prominent Democratic family. His uncle is a federal district judge in Kansas who was appointed to the bench by President Clinton. His aunt Mary was appointed to the federal district court in Arizona by President Clinton, and was recently elevated to the Ninth Circuit by President Obama. His other aunt, Janet, is the president of the National Council of La Raza (translation: The Race), serves on the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, and served as deputy assistant to President Clinton at the White House. She’s a major player in national Democratic circles.
Sometimes who you know is as important as what your politics are in getting a job at this DOJ.
Nicole Ndumele: Before getting hired by the Section, Ms. Ndumele worked briefly as a public defender in Boston. Prior to that, she spent two years at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (LCCR) focusing on housing discrimination and legislative advocacy, working largely under the supervision of Joe Rich, the former chief of the Civil Rights Division’s Voting Section. (Be sure to read PJMedia’s “Joe Rich, an Uncivil Man from the Civil Rights Division.”)
Unfortunately for Ms. Ndumele, the major federal class action housing lawsuit that she brought on behalf of the LCCR was thrown out. So, too, was the litigation she worked on seeking to increase airlines’ liability for acts of supposed racial profiling of passengers.
Still, she did manage to find time to co-author a wacky “shadow report” for the United Nations blasting the United States’ efforts to combat race discrimination. The report — titled “Unequal Opportunity: A Critical Assessment of the U.S. Commitment to the Elimination of Racial Discrimination” — reads like exactly what it is: a product of the professional racial grievance culture.
Her commitment to racial politics is also well established. During law school — where she was named an NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund Scholar — she co-founded the Multi-Racial Law Students Association and served on the Executive Board of the Black Law Students Association. It’s fair to say that Ms. Ndumele won’t be willingly heading to Wisconsin to investigate the attacks by the mob against the white fair-goers.
Christine Siscaretti: Ms. Siscaretti comes to the Section after working a couple of years at the Queens County (N.Y.) District Attorney’s Office. But Civil Rights Division officials were surely impressed by her service on the Third World Law Journal at Boston College Law School. This journal characterizes its mission as providing “a forum for discussing legal issues affecting people, cultures, and institutions that share a common history of colonialism, oppression, under-representation, and marginalization in the political and economic processes.” Oh, and by the way, to many of the journal’s members, this includes the United States.
That may explain why Ms. Siscaretti herself assisted with an article in this fringe publication advocating greater integration of California’s illegal immigrant population. Good to know that she is now entrusted with fairly enforcing our nation’s civil rights laws.
Each of the aforementioned attorneys will have little difficulty fitting in with the culture of the Criminal Section, in which lawyers see themselves not as prosecutors who happen to be enforcing civil rights violations, but as activist civil rights attorneys who happen to be prosecuting cases.
A scoring update is in order. So far, PJMedia has profiled 106 new career attorneys hired into the Civil Rights Division during the Obama administration. The results:
Leftist lawyers hired: 106
Moderate, non-ideological, or conservative lawyers hired: 0.
The exclusively liberal background of these new lawyers is no accident. As I wrote before, a pretextual hiring standard is being employed. Division leaders, of course, aren’t calling it a “liberal” litmus test; they are instead referring to it as a requirement that all successful candidates have “civil rights experience.” But their definition of “civil rights experience” only includes prior employment, membership, or affiliation with left-wing advocacy organizations.
Worse, Loretta King, while serving as the acting assistant attorney general for civil rights at the outset of the Obama administration, ordered the resumes of highly qualified applicants to be rejected only because they didn’t have political or left-wing civil rights experience. Multiple DOJ sources with direct knowledge of hiring committee practices have confirmed this to me.
So what does the corrupted hiring mean to the average American? It means if you go to the Wisconsin State Fair and are beaten because you are white, your federal government will do nothing for you, even as it would act if attacker and attacked races were reversed. It means if you are Marty Marshall standing in your front yard watching fireworks with your family, and are attacked by a mob yelling “this is our world. This is a black world,” don’t expect DOJ to act. It means if you are Dick Retta and are pepper-sprayed by a liberal for praying and exercising federal rights to protest abortion, don’t expect the law to protect you.
What does it mean? It means we have reached that dangerous line crossed in past civilizations where the law appears to apply to some, but not to all. This is un-American, and must stop. Otherwise, Americans will stop it next year at the ballot box.