Black panthers intimidating voters in philadelphia
Conservative broadcasters and websites have claimed that the Obama administration is dropping prosecution of New Black Panther activists who were videotaped outside a Philadelphia polling station on Election Day 2008, making intimidating remarks; one man was carrying a nightstick. Commission on Civil Rights denounced allegations by some pundits that the Justice Department is refusing to pursue a voting rights case against members of the New Black Panther Party because of race, and suggested that the charges being made by right-wing figures are politically motivated.
When people take these issues and attempt to use them for political reasons, when they feed rage, they're doing something very, very dangerous.Career DOJ attorneys, who interviewed me several times, had months of hard work building a case nullified.In the end, only Shabazz, who was holding the nightstick, faced consequences for his actions—an injunction that he not display a “weapon within 100 feet of any open polling location on any election day in the city of Philadelphia” until November 15, 2012. Earlier this month that senior officials in the department are not applying voting rights laws in a race-neutral way, by refusing to press charges against African Americans on these issues.A recent Media Matters investigation has debunked charges that the Obama administration withdrew criminal charges against the Panthers (in fact, the Bush administration decided not to pursue criminal charges, with Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez testifying that the Bush Justice Department "determined that the facts did not constitute a prosecutable violation of the criminal statutes"; a civil lawsuit was filed in the last days of the Bush administration, and a judgment won by the Obama Justice Department in May 2009).