Let's Reach Out to Swing Voters by Resurrecting the New Black Panther Case

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
March 18 2013 2:23 PM

Let's Reach Out to Swing Voters by Resurrecting the New Black Panther Case

119888405
U.S. Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) in 2011.

Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

The nomination of Tom Perez to run the Department of Labor is functioning, so far, as a highly sophisticated bit of trolling. Louisiana Sen. David Vitter is the first to get trolled.

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

"Thomas Perez's record should be met with great suspicion by my colleagues for his spotty work related to the New Black Panther case, but Louisianians most certainly should have cause for concern about this nomination," Vitter said in a statement. 
The senator went on to cite a separate incident in which the Justice Department filed suit against Louisiana over its voter registration efforts.
Advertisement

The latter case, from 2011, concerns a DOJ investigation of whether Louisiana was fulfilling an obligation to offer voter registration to people showing up at welfare offices. (They're supposed to.) Vitter had two complaints: The sting wasn't happening in other states, and DOJ wasn't simultaneously doing enough to enforce voter ID laws. Fair enough. Perez was running the DOJ's Civil Rights Division at the time. But he wasn't there during the New Black Panther case and its aftermath. The rap against him is based on his failure to say that political appointees were aware of the decision to drop the case, though non-political appointees were the ones who dropped it.

This guy, Tom Perez, is a Hugo Chavezite who may be "the most radical left-wing cabinet member in history." Now, J. Christian Adams' book is Injustice: Exposing the Racial Agenda of the Obama Justice Department. He described this guy, Perez, in it. But the New Black Panther case is just one case that this guy was involved in.

He wasn't involved with the case! This is going to take a while.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

TODAY IN SLATE

Sports Nut

Grandmaster Clash

One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.

The Extraordinary Amicus Brief That Attempts to Explain the Wu-Tang Clan to the Supreme Court Justices

Amazon Is Officially a Gadget Company. Here Are Its Six New Devices.

Do the Celebrities Whose Nude Photos Were Stolen Have a Case Against Apple?

The NFL Explains How It Sees “the Role of the Female”

Future Tense

Amazon Is Now a Gadget Company

Food

How to Order Chinese Food

First, stop thinking of it as “Chinese food.”

Scotland Is Inspiring Secessionists Across America

The Country Where Women Aren’t Allowed to Work Once They’re 36 Weeks’ Pregnant

The XX Factor
Sept. 18 2014 11:40 AM The Country Where Women Aren’t Allowed to Work Once They’re 36 Weeks’ Pregnant
Moneybox
Sept. 17 2014 5:10 PM The Most Awkward Scenario in Which a Man Can Hold a Door for a Woman
  News & Politics
Weigel
Sept. 18 2014 3:19 PM In Defense of Congress Leaving Town Without a New War Vote
  Business
Business Insider
Sept. 18 2014 3:31 PM What Europe Would Look Like If All the Separatist Movements Got Their Way
  Life
Outward
Sept. 18 2014 3:24 PM Symantec Removes Its “Sexual Orientation” Filter
  Double X
The XX Factor
Sept. 18 2014 3:30 PM How Crisis Pregnancy Centers Trick Women
  Slate Plus
Behind the Scenes
Sept. 18 2014 1:23 PM “It’s Not Every Day That You Can Beat the World Champion” An exclusive interview with chess grandmaster Fabiano Caruana.
  Arts
Culturebox
Sept. 18 2014 4:00 PM When The Cosby Show Got “Very Special” Why were The Cosby Show’s Very Special Episodes so much better than every other ’80s sitcom’s?
  Technology
Future Tense
Sept. 18 2014 2:39 PM Here's How to Keep Apple From Sharing Your iPhone Data With the Police
  Health & Science
Science
Sept. 18 2014 3:35 PM Do People Still Die of Rabies? And how do you know if an animal is rabid?
  Sports
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.