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Philadelphia injustice: Investigate Holder

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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Attorney General Eric Holder has renewed rattling his saber about investigating the Bush administration's torture policy. Whether that's a trial balloon, as even some Democrats suggest, is not clear. But in any event, it's actually Mr. Holder who should be the subject of an investigation.

In a stunning move, Holder's Justice Department decided not to pursue the most serious charges against members of the New Black Panther Party for Self-Defense. They were accused of intimidating voters at a Philadelphia polling place on Nov. 4, 2008.

A Justice spokeswoman insists the facts did not back up all but one of the charges. But a video does.

It shows two Black Panthers "standing 10 to 15 feet from the polling station. The two men are seen standing shoulder to shoulder, dressed in black military-style uniforms, black berets and combat boots," reminds reporter Molly K. Hooper, writing in The Hill newspaper.

One of the men "tapped and pointed his nightstick in his hands at individuals," she recounted. Blind justice has new meaning.

Holder hasn't been responding to key House Republicans' calls for answers. But there is talk of hearings on the matter before John Conyers' House Judiciary Committee.

If Mr. Conyers' reneging on holding hearings into the ACORN scandal is any indication, however, there will be no hearings on the Panthers' shenanigans. And justice will be disserved. Again.

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