Boehner: DOJ Politicized … In Favor of Dems!

October 31, 2008 3:41 p.m.

At last, a high-ranking Republican has admitted what many Democrats and independent observers have maintained since the scandal over the US Attorney firings — that, under President Bush, the Department of Justice has been inappropriately politicized.

But according to John Boehner, the House GOP leader, that politicization was actually carried out … by Democrats.

Boehner today released a letter to Attorney General Michael Mukasey, in which he complained about the department’s decision no longer to include federal prosecutors in its teams of election observers, as it has done in previous years.

He also cited recent reports that some top officials in the department’s voting-rights section had contributed to Barack Obama’s campaign.

Writes Boehner:

Frankly, the real motive behind the Department’s decision is undeniably suspect given that Obama partisans in key positions at the Department of Justice may well have played a pivotal role in making it.

Earlier this week, DOJ announced that it would decline a request by Boehner — forwarded by the White House — to intervene in a voting dispute in Ohio, on behalf of state Republicans.

Yesterday, the department released a list of the polling places to which it will send its team of observers. We’ll have more on that shortly.

Boehner’s full letter follows after the jump…The Honorable Michael B. Mukasey

Attorney General

United States Department of Justice

Dear Mr. Attorney General:

I have just been advised of your department’s decision to reverse its longstanding policy of assigning criminal prosecutors to serve on all federal election observer teams. I am deeply concerned about this decision, particularly in the wake of a steady stream of reports highlighting voter registration fraud and potential fraudulent voting activities that have dominated the news in recent weeks.

I am particularly dismayed to learn that several DOJ officials with important responsibilities for overseeing enforcement of the nation’s voting rights laws – from access to the polls to protecting against voter fraud – are significant financial contributors to the Obama presidential campaign. According to published reports, approximately $250,000 has already been contributed by DOJ employees to the Obama campaign, including personal contributions from several senior officials in the Voting Rights Section of the DOJ. This news does nothing to inspire confidence by the American people in the DOJ’s ability to assure fair elections and the equal application of the nation’s voting laws.

Frankly, the real motive behind the Department’s decision is undeniably suspect given that Obama partisans in key positions at the Department of Justice may well have played a pivotal role in making it.

On behalf of my Republican colleagues in the House of Representatives – who share my commitment to ensuring the fairness and integrity of the 2008 election – I strongly urge you to reverse the DOJ decision announced in September and immediately announce your intention to dispatch experienced criminal prosecutors as members of federal election observer teams nationwide.

The Department of Justice must use all means at its disposal to assure that every eligible citizen has access to the polls — and to thwart attempts by persons or organizations seeking to fraudulently obtain, cast or count ballots in the 2008 election.

With November 4th just days away, it is imperative to move quickly and publicly to safeguard the integrity of this election. Accordingly, I ask that you notify me by close of business today whether you will restore the Department’s longstanding policy of including federal prosecutors on each of its election observer teams.

Thank you for your attention to this critically important matter.


John A. Boehner

Republican Leader


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