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Today, former Kansas City U.S. Attorney Brad Schlozman is set to make his appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee (he had bowed out of the date originally proposed by the committee, stating that he would be “on vacation”). In preparation for his appearance, the Los Angeles Times provides a solid backgrounder. Schlozman, the Times reports, was viewed by career attorneys in the Civil Rights Division as “the enemy.” His major functions there consisted of attempting to pack the division with unqualified political hacks and pushing the notion of Jim Crow-style legislation designed to limit access of minorities to the ballot box, particularly in states like Georgia, with a long track record of voting rights abuse.
After his appointment to Kansas City, Schlozman immediately moved electoral manipulation to the top of his office’s agenda.
One of Schlozman’s priorities was filing a suit against a black political boss in Mississippi who was allegedly violating the rights of white voters. The complaint was the first time the Justice Department ever claimed that whites suffered discrimination in voting because of race. The case is pending.
The department also began aggressively enforcing a law requiring states to maintain accurate voter registration lists. On Schlozman’s watch, the Justice Department filed a lawsuit in November 2005 against the state of Missouri, where in some counties the number of registered voters exceeded the voting-age population. The government said the lists were rife with potential for fraud.
Todd Graves, then the U.S. attorney in Kansas City, reportedly had reservations about the suit, and refused to sign the complaint. Graves, who has said he was ordered to resign last year by department headquarters, is also scheduled to testify at Tuesday’s congressional hearing.
Graves’s clashes with Schlozman over voter manipulation issues apparently led to a discussion to demand his resignation. Today Murray Waas offers further detail in the Huffington Post about Graves’s conflicts with main Justice that led to his dismissal, including a heart-wrenching pharmaceuticals fraud case that Graves handled but in which main Justice was uninterested.
More from Scott Horton:
Conversation — August 5, 2016, 12:08 pm
Sidney Blumenthal on the origins of the Republican Party, the fallout from Clinton’s emails, and his new biography of Abraham Lincoln
Conversation — March 30, 2016, 3:44 pm
Joseph Hickman discusses his new book, The Burn Pits, which tells the story of thousands of U.S. soldiers who, after returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, have developed rare cancers and respiratory diseases.
Flor Arely Sánchez had been in bed with a fever and pains throughout her body for three days when a July thunderstorm broke over the mountainside. She got nervous when bolts of light flashed in the sky. Lightning strikes the San Julián region of western El Salvador several times a year, and her neighbors fear storms more than they fear the march of diseases — first dengue, then chikungunya, now Zika. Flor worried about a lot of things, since she was pregnant.
Late in the afternoon, when the pains had somewhat eased, Flor thought she might go to a dammed-up bit of the river near her house to bathe. She is thirty-five and has lived in the same place all her life, where wrinkled hills are planted with corn, beans, and fruit trees. She took a towel and soap and walked out into the rain. Halfway to the river, the pains returned and overcame her. The next thing Flor remembers, she was in a room she didn’t recognize, unable to move. As she soon discovered, she was in a hospital, her ankle cuffed to the bed, and she was being investigated for abortion.
Average duration of a Japanese prime minister’s tenure since August 1993, in months:
Brain shrinkage has no effect on cognition.
An Indianapolis fertility doctor was accused of using his own sperm to artificially inseminate patients, and a Delaware man pleaded guilty to fatally stabbing his former psychiatrist.
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“Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'”