Politico Dismisses Key New Black Panther Facts
Reporting on the New Black Panther Party controversy, Politico’s Ben Smith recounted the facts of the case for a July 16th article:
The facts of the case are relatively simple. Two men were captured on a video standing outside a polling place in a black Philadelphia neighborhood on Election Day in 2008. One of the men had a nightstick, if an unclear agenda — though a member of the black nationalist New Black Panther Party, he had earlier professed loathing for the Democratic “puppet” candidate, Barack Obama, who went on to overwhelmingly carry that precinct.
Three Republican poll monitors filed complaints of intimidation — itself a federal crime — but no voters attested to being turned away. The Justice Department, while Bush was still president, investigated the incident and later, after Obama took office, decided that “the facts and the law did not support pursuing” the claims against the party and against a second, unarmed man, Justice spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler said.
What Smith fails to mention is that the DOJ trial team in charge of the case had filed a notice of default judgment with the court after the defendants in the case failed to respond to the DOJs civil case.
Only after Obama political appointees intervened was the trial team forced to dismiss the case. This despite the fact that career lawyers in the appellate division reviewed the facts and determined their was plenty of evidence necessary to sustain the default judgment.
Journalists who want to get the facts right can read a full timeline of the case here.