Monday, July 28, 2008

Conservative Affirmative Action

Lately, the question of Obama and McCain's positions on affirmative action have been making the rounds among the punditocracy. Many conservatives deplore the whole concept of affirmative action, often arguing that objective qualifications should be the basis for placements or hiring. And yet we have evidence that the Bush Justice Department was practicing its own kind of affirmative action hiring. Monica Goodling, that farce of an attorney, engaged in all kinds of affirmative action litmus tests in hiring lawyers for career staff positions at the Department of Justice. Money paragraphs from the New York Times story on the subject:

In one case, for instance, Ms. Goodling slowed the hiring of a prosecutor in the United States attorney’s office in Washington, D.C., for a vacancy because she said she was concerned that he was a “liberal Democrat.” After the United States attorney, Jeffrey Taylor, complained to her supervisors, he was allowed to hire the candidate anyway.

And in another case, colleagues said that Ms. Goodling refused to extend the appointment of a female prosecutor because she believed the lawyer was involved in a lesbian relationship with her supervisor, according to the report.

And in another case cited by the inspector general, Ms. Goodling blocked the hiring of an experienced prosecutor for a senior counter-terrorism position because his wife was active in Democratic politics. The candidate was regarded as “head and shoulders above the other candidates” in the view of officials in the executive office of United States attorneys, but they were forced to take a candidate with much less experience because he was deemed acceptable to Ms. Goodling.
Notice we're not talking about college admissions or private company hiring practices, we're talking about the U.S. Department of Justice, that government agency responsible for serving all Americans in the impartial and fair administration of justice. The blatant politicization of the DOJ by Monica Goodling under the watch of ex-Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez is stunning. The last I checked the DOJ is a branch of government, not a branch of the GOP nor of the Christian Coalition. Where's the outrage among conservatives?

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