Apparently giving offense to Native Americans will get you in hot water faster than will defending the Holder DOJ’s dismissal of the New Black Panther voter intimidation case. Charlie Martin below has this PJ Tatler piece about the departure of Paul Mirengoff at Powerline, because his large law firm has an Indian lobbying practice and a partner raised a fuss about one of Mirengoff’s posts. Charlie points out that this partner “is a member of the Onondago Nation” and didn’t care for Mirengoff’s post on the Tucson memorial service.
A few months back, the same Mirengoff engaged in some legalistic and factual contortions to defend the Justice Department’s dismissal of the vote intimidation case. I won’t rehash those arguments here, or the rebuttal of Hans von Spakovsky dissecting them at Pajamas Media. My point is – I’ll bet dollars to doughnuts that there wasn’t a peep out of any of the partners at Akin Gump about Mirengoff’s preposterous defense of the actions of an anti-Semitic hate group. Consider this dandy he wrote: one Black Panther “did not have a weapon. In addition, he was a certified poll watcher. The local police officer who arrived at the scene and investigated the matter concluded that, unlike Shabazz, his actions did not warrant removal from the polling station.” Putting aside the raw factual inaccuracies of this statement, it was quite a shock to see someone at a firm like Akin encouraging this behavior by supporting the unavailability of federal civil rights remedies in this circumstance. Not surprisingly, the New Black Panthers showed up in Houston in 2010 for an encore.
I am told Mirengoff’s Thernstrom-like defense of the dismissal at Powerline was in fact spawned by a lunch with…. Thernstrom! Whether or not that actually happened, the similarity in word choice between the two of them was obvious. What we learn from the exit of Paul Mirengoff is that when you “offend” millions of people who want equal enforcement of the law and protection from anti-white and anti-Semitic thugs at the polls, Big Law has little to say. But when you “offend” other segments, you do so at your own peril.