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VOTING FRAUD PROSECUTIONS
O RECOND ONER
Printed for the use of the Committee on the Judiciary
U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
WASHINGTON : 1986
For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, Congressional Sales Office
U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402
COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
PETER W. RODINO, JR., New Jersey, Chairman JACK BROOKS, Texas
HAMILTON FISH, JR., New York ROBERT W. KASTENMEIER, Wisconsin CARLOS J. MOORHEAD, California DON EDWARDS, California
HENRY J. HYDE, Illinois JOHN CONYERS, JR., Michigan
THOMAS N. KINDNESS, Ohio JOHN F. SEIBERLING, Ohio
DAN LUNGREN, California ROMANO L. MAZZOLI, Kentucky
F. JAMES SENSENBRENNER, JR., WILLIAM J. HUGHES, New Jersey SAM B. HALL, JR., Texas
BILL McCOLLUM, Florida MIKE SYNAR, Oklahoma
E. CLAY SHAW, JR., Florida PATRICIA SCHROEDER, Colorado
GEORGE W. GEKAS, Pennsylvania DAN GLICKMAN, Kansas
MICHAEL DEWINE, Ohio BARNEY FRANK, Massachusetts
WILLIAM E. DANNEMEYER, California GEO. W. CROCKETT, JR., Michigan
HANK BROWN, Colorado CHARLES E. SCHUMER, New York
PATRICK L. SWINDALL, Georgia
HOWARD COBLE, North Carolina
M. ELAINE MIELKE, General Counsel
GARNER J. CLINE, Staff Director
SUBCOMMITTEE ON CIVIL AND CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS
DON EDWARDS, California, Chairman ROBERT W. KASTENMEIER, Wisconsin F. JAMES SENSENBRENNER, JR., JOHN CONYERS, JR., Michigan
Wisconsin PATRICIA SCHROEDER, Colorado
MICHAEL DEWINE, Ohio
WILLIAM E. DANNEMEYER, California
Burnim, Ira A., Southern Poverty Law Center, Montgomery, AL, accompanied
by Sweet, Dennis, attorney, Southern Poverty Law Center
Prepared statement ...............
Prepared statement ......
April 1985 ............
National Black Caucus of State Legislators...........
General, Criminal Division, Department of Justice, October 2, 1985 ...............
prosecution of election offenses .....
tee election manager, Perry County, AL ..............
New Afrika .............
Greene County, AL, et al., September 19, 1985.
CIVIL RIGHTS IMPLICATIONS OF FEDERAL
VOTING FRAUD PROSECUTIONS
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 26, 1985
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES,
Washington, DC. The subcommittee met, pursuant to call, at 9:30 a.m., in room 2237, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Don Edwards (chairman of the subcommittee) presiding.
Present: Representatives Edwards, Kastenmeier, Conyers, Schroeder, and Sensenbrenner.
Staff present: Catherine Leroy, counsel; Stuart J. Ishimaru, assistant counsel; and Philip Kiko, associate counsel. Mr. EDWARDS. The subcommittee will come to order.
This morning the subcommittee begins a series of hearings examining the civil rights implications of Federal voting fraud prosecutions. Our focus today is on prosecutions brought by the Justice Department in Alabama.
Last fall, the Justice Department announced a new campaign to crack down on election fraud and abuse. At that time, the committee was concerned with the effect this campaign might have on the rights and protections afforded by the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Chairman Rodino wrote to then-Attorney General Smith to express his concern and ask to be advised about the steps being taken to ensure that investigation and prosecution of election offenses did not undermine the Voting Rights Act.
The department responded and said that its objective was—and I quote the department:
To assure that all citizens exercise and enjoy a franchise that is free from fraud, bribery, and intimidation. *** To prevent these law enforcement efforts from having an undesired chilling effect on legitimate voting activity, *** all election fraud investigations and indictments (must) be precleared with the Public Integrity Section of the Criminal Division. *** The Civil Rights Division has had, and will continue to have, input into the discharge of this preclearance and over sight function.
I ask this correspondence be made a part of this record. Without objection, so ordered.
(The letter follows:)