The McClatchy Newspapers report today that in the final weeks before the midterm Congressional elections of November 2006, presidential political advisor Karl Rove orchestrated a large-scale effort to suppress voter turnout among potentially Democratic constituencies, leveraging Department of Justice resources in the process. Key to the project were P. Kyle Sampson, Alberto Gonzales’s chief of staff, and Matthew Friedrich, then chief of staff in the Department’s Criminal Division.
Friedrich’s testimony and statements to Congressional investigators made clear that the decision to proceed with “voter fraud” charges in a series of dubious cases resulted from direction from partisan political operatives in the White House, including Rove.
Only weeks before last year’s pivotal midterm elections, the White House urged the Justice Department to pursue voter-fraud allegations against Democrats in three battleground states, a high-ranking Justice official has told congressional investigators.
In two instances in October 2006, President Bush’s political adviser, Karl Rove, or his deputies passed the allegations on to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’ then-chief of staff, Kyle Sampson.
These and similar allegations make increasingly plain why Rove and the White House are going to such tremendous lengths to block his testimony under oath.