Bush Administration Hires Lawyers Opposed To Affirmative Action
The Bush administration has politicized hiring of attorneys for the Civil Rights division of the Justice Department to
come up with a staff that opposed affirmative action and had little interest in filing suits where discrimination laws
had been violated.
That’s the view of Charlie Savage of The Boston Globe, winner of the 2007 Pulitzer Prize in the category of national reporting. Savage was interviewed about his new book by
Dean Lawrence Velvel of the Massachusetts School of Law at Andover, Mass, part of the “Books of Our Times” series,
distributed by Comcast.
Prior to 2001, when a vacancy occurred, a committee of career attorneys would screen candidates and conduct interviews
and decide who to hire, Savage said, but this was changed the following year under Attorney General Ashcroft. “Now the
political appointees did all that processing themselves,” Savage said.
The result was Justice hired lawyers “that had been working for groups that were attacking affirmative action programs,”
“Instead of filing big law suits alleging systematic discrimination against African-Americans that had been the
bread-and-butter of that agency they were suddenly filing unprecedented law suits alleging reverse discrimination
against white people or against Christian groups,” diverting the agency’s resources “into a way the White House found
more politically palatable.”
Savage added, “It was a smart way they (Bush administration) had figured out to seize political control and impose their
political control over the executive branch.”
The Massachusetts School of Law is dedicated to providing a quality, affordable legal education to underserved
minorities, immigrants, and students from low- and middle-income homes who could not otherwise afford to attend law
school and enter the legal profession.