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Yet Another Dynamic DOJ Duo

Batman  & RobinYes, we’re all familiar with the Know-Nothing Twins, Gonzalez and McNulty; and the Political Purity Pod People, Sampson and Goodling, and now it looks like tomorrow we’ll get to meet Brad Schlozman’s partner in the Super Suppressors Action Team, Hans von Spakovsky. And he sounds every bit as charming and fair-minded as his helium-breathing former boss:

…[V]on Spakovsky was “the point person for undermining the Civil Rights Division’s mandate to protect voting rights.” Von Spakovsky reported to Schlozman, and the two worked together to purge voters from the rolls, ensure that voter ID laws were approved with no fuss, and punish lawyers who did not toe the line.

But while Schlozman was the enforcer, von Spakovsky seems to have been the brains of the operation. Von Spakovsky, unlike Schlozman, had a background in election law and had been pushing the voter fraud canard for years — to great effect.

Baron von Spakovsky would pretty much have to be the brains of that operation, considering Schlozman can barely remember his own name…

…[V]on Spakovsky attempted to force widespread purging of voter rolls based on a very restrictive reading of election law (which von Spakovsky knew inside and out, since he helped draft the Help America Vote Act). “For example,” the lawyers write, “in one letter, he advocated for a policy keeping eligible citizens off the voter rolls for typos and other mistakes by election officials.” And as McClatchy detailed last month, he extended his activities to making sure the Election Assistance Commission, a tiny agency that serves as the government’s election information clearinghouse, published research that conformed to the voter-fraud orthodoxy.

I guess he would have been helping out with the voter ID requirements part of HAVA, which the Republicans wouldn’t pass it without.

Oh gee, I almost forgot why his name has come up: Clever Hans is currently an FEC commissioner, installed via (what else?) recess appointment 18 months ago, and he has a confirmation hearing before the Senate Rules and Administration Committee tomorrow in hopes of becoming a “real” commissioner. Good luck with that, Hans. If you couldn’t get confirmed by the Rubber Stamp Congress, you’re sure as hell not getting confirmed by the Intermittent Backbone Congress. Fortunately, he was only a commissioner for 18 short months, otherwise he could have done some real damage.

Meanwhile, the other half of the Super Suppressors Action Team has backtracked on his rather remarkable claim that Craig Donsanto, author of the DoJ election policy manual (the one that tells you not to pursue voter fraud investigations right before an election) gave him the go-ahead to pursue a voter fraud investigation right before the 2006 election. Strange, because he had seemed so very sure about it when he testified, but hey, memory’s a funny thing, I’m sure it was an honest mistake and totally not perjury at all. Maybe hypnosis would help?

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