Stops Harry Reid's 'Deal' to Move Forward with GOP 'Voter Fraud' Zealot's FEC Nomination...
[2/25/08: Welcome to Hugh Hewitt's Townhall blog readers! You should know that you are being misled by Patrick Ruffini's disinformational blog item today. Please see our response to it here so that you get the full story on what is actually going on with the FEC nominations in the Senate, which are currently being blocked by the Republican leadership in that body.]
A Democrat does the right thing for a change! What are the odds these days? And will it hold?
Senator and Presidential Candidate Barack Obama (D-IL), had recently (and correctly) called on Bush to send up an "acceptable" nominee to the Federal Election Commission (FEC), instead of the anti-Democracy, anti-voter villain Hans von Spakovsky.
"His record of poor management, divisiveness, and inappropriate partisanship makes him an unacceptable nominee to the FEC," Obama had previously said. "I am particularly concerned with his efforts to undermine voting rights at the Civil Rights Division during his tenure at the Department of Justice."
And for a change, we have a Democrat who has decided to put his money where his mouth is! For now.
Roll Call (subscription req'd) is reporting that Harry Reid (D-NV) and the Democratic Leadership had shamefully "struck a deal" with Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KS) to slide four FEC nominations, including the GOP "voter fraud" zealot, von Spakovsky, through the Senate on a voice vote, unless any Senators objected.
Obama did object today and succeeded in blocking the vote. Bravo! Don't back down, Senator!
TPM has more details from the Roll Call report. Loyola law professor Rick Hasen offers speculation on what comes next.
For more on the evil von Spakovsky, our extensive coverage of the Bush crony/operative began in late 2005 as he was nominated and then recess appointed by Bush to the FEC. While at the Civil Rights division at the DoJ, he was, among other embarrassing affairs, at the heart of the successful national GOP strategy to gut the beloved Voting Rights Act of 1965. Who better to sit on the FEC?! And in a Presidential Election year no less!
We've requested a comment/explanation from Reid's office on what he must have been thinking. Will update this item if we get one.
UPDATE: Russ Feingold (D-WI) joined Obama in blocking the vote on vS. They've just issued this joint statement:
"While at the Department of Justice, Hans von Spakovsky was directly involved in efforts to politicize the Department and use the Voting Rights Section to disenfranchise voters, rather than enforce our nation's civil rights laws. As a recess appointee to the FEC he has been a committed, ideological opponent of the campaign finance laws he is supposed to enforce. Putting him at the head of the FEC is just another example of this administration putting the fox in charge of the hen house. We oppose his nomination, and any effort to tie his nomination to the other pending nominations to the FEC."
Still no word on what Reid must have been thinking.
UPDATE 10/5/07: Paul Kiel updates the story with the "game of chicken" now in play in the Senate, and the ramifications for 2008 if a stalemate continues.