Thursday, June 7, 2007

Von Spakovsky and Schlozman, The Tweedledee and Tweedledum of Republican Voter Suppression

Next week, unless he decides to quit, (my bet) there will be a confirmation hearing for Hans Von Spakovsky to the Federal Election Commission.

This afternoon the Brennen Center for Justice and the Lawyers Committee sponsored a press conference providing background information about Von Spakovsky's role in the Republican voter suppression campaign. The presser was held at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. The questions were answered by Joseph Rich, former chief of the Voting Rights Division, of the Civil Rights Division of the USDoJ's Professional Staff.

Unfortunately, I live a thousand miles away. As much as I would like I just couldn't attend. Because Von Spakovsky is the next big name on the voter suppression hit parade, I am looking for a complete transcript. We will hear a lot about Hans during the coming week.

Because they office in DC and they have a real budget, ThinkProgress was able to send a reporter. (Blue girl, you need to do something about that.)

The press conference took a 1/2 step away from Von Spakovsky when one of the reporters ask Rich questions about Bradley Schlozman and the ACORN indictments. You will recall that Schlozman is adamant that Craig Donsanto, the director of the Election Crimes branch in the Public Integrity section, ordered him to go forward with the indictments in the face of express directions published the manual Donsanto wrote. ThinkProgress is reporting this evening that Rich believes

“Schlozman’s the person who recommended those lawsuits, he pushed to get them, and I suspect [Schlozman] pressured Donsanto.”
According to ThinkProgress, Rich said, “I’ve heard that Schlozman talked to [Michael] Elston, which indicated he may have gone over Donsanto’s head to get approval.”

That kind of pressure might explain why Schlozman was so sure Donsanto would back him up even though everyone agrees the indictments flew in the face of Donsanto's own manual, DoJ rules and long standing tradition.

Whatever rock you turn over in this voter suppression mess you find Von Spakovsky and Schlozman. They are virtually Tweedledee and Tweedledum. I wonder how high up the food chain we have to go to find their master?

This has been an interesting exercise. I have learned how to spell some funny sounding German names.