As between Jennifer Rubin and Abigail Thernstrom, I’m going with Jen. Her latest on why DOJ’s New Black Panther Party scandal is not “small potatoes” is posted at the Standard, here.
I am not holding my breath waiting for DOJ inspector general Glenn Fine to do the kind of thoroughgoing investigation of DOJ that is crying out to be done. I’d feel differently if Jen were the IG. But Fine is an eleventh hour Clinton appointee. He was put in the job after the 2000 election but before Bush was sworn in a month later. That is, Fine was installed by Clinton – who at that time (December 2000) was, with the help of then-Deputy AG Eric Holder, riding roughshod of DOJ’s pardons process.
The sole purpose of installing Fine at that point, rather than waiting a few weeks so Bush could pick his own DOJ-IG, was to have a Democrat appointee police the Justice Department of the incoming Republican administration. For whatever reason, the Bush administration left Fine in place for its entire eight-year run. (Can you imagine Clinton or Obama leaving in place an IG their GOP predecessors had installed to investigate their Justice Departments?) Not surprisingly, Fine has retained the IG post in Obama’s DOJ — which, of course, is led by Fine’s Clinton DOJ colleague, Holder, the fingerprints of whose top aides are all over everything that stinks to high heaven in the Black Panther caper.
As Jen notes, until very recently, Fine has refused to investigate DOJ’s handling of the Black Panther voter intimidation case and the flashing neon signs that the Obama/Holder DOJ adheres to a noxious policy of racially discriminatory enforcement of the civil rights laws. Fine has finally been dragged into doing his job by continuous pressure from House Republicans, by embarrassing details uncovered in the Civil Rights Commission’s investigation (no thanks to Commissioner Thernstrom), and by some very suspect testimony from Thomas Perez, chief of DOJ’s civil rights division.
Watch out, though. Fine’s investigation will surely be used by Holder as an excuse to keep stonewalling what is certain to be heightened congressional attention if the Republicans take the House back in November. If an electoral wave leaves House committees (and their subpoena power) in GOP control, expect DOJ and the Obamedia to complain that Congress should stay its hand so Fine can finish the internal investigation it has taken him nearly two years to start. Here’s hoping they don’t listen.