DOJ IG Takes Down Schlozman

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The long-awaited inspector general report on the politicization of the Bush DOJ Civil Rights Division has been released, and our old friend Bradley Schlozman is firmly in the cross-hairs:

The evidence in our investigation showed that Schlozman, first as a Deputy Assistant Attorney General and subsequently as Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General and Acting Assistant Attorney General, considered political and ideological affiliations in hiring career attorneys and in other personnel actions affecting career attorneys in the Civil Rights Division. In doing so, he violated federal law – the Civil Service Reform Act – and Department policy that prohibit discrimination
in federal employment based on political and ideological affiliations, and committed misconduct. The evidence also showed that Division managers failed to exercise sufficient oversight to ensure that Schlozman did not engage in inappropriate hiring and personnel practices. Moreover, Schlozman made false statements about whether he considered political and ideological affiliations when he gave sworn testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee and in his written responses to supplemental questions from the Committee.

Schlozman is no longer employed by the Department and, therefore, is not subject to disciplinary action by the Department. We recommend, however, that, if criminal prosecution is declined these findings be considered if Schlozman seeks federal employment in the future. We believe that his violations of the merit system principles set forth in the Civil Service Reform Act, federal regulations, and Department policy, and his subsequent false statements to Congress render him unsuitable for federal service.

Interestingly, the report is dated July 2, 2008, but was only released today. I’m speculating here, but I suspect that’s because the findings were referred to DOJ for possible prosecution of Schlozman. We’re trying to nail down now whether that explains the delay in releasing the report – and whether that means DOJ has declined to prosecute Schlozman for lying to Congress.

Late Update: Indeed, DOJ did decline to prosecute Scholzman. From the report:

We referred the findings from our investigation to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia in March 2008. We completed this written report of investigation in July 2008.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office informed us on January 9, 2009, of its decision to decline prosecution of Schlozman. The Interim U.S. Attorney, Jeffrey Taylor, was recused from the matter and the decision.

We are now releasing our July 2008 report of investigation.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

David Kurtz is Managing Editor and Washington Bureau Chief of Talking Points Memo where he oversees the news operations of TPM and its sister sites.
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