Senate Dem to oppose Mumia-defender Obama appointee

posted at 12:41 pm on March 3, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

Last year, Harry Reid invoked the nuclear option in the Senate in order to get Barack Obama’s appointees confirmed over Republican opposition. His latest appointee might be doomed anyway. Sen. Robert Casey (D-PA) announced on Friday that he will oppose the confirmation of Debo Adegbile to run the Civil Rights Division at Justice on account of Adegbile’s activism for convicted cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal:

Sen. Bob Casey (D., Pa.) said Friday he will vote against Senate confirmation of Debo Adegbile, an Obama administration nominee who has been criticized for his role in trying to overturn the death sentence of Mumia Abu-Jamal, who was convicted in the 1981 killing of a Philadelphia police officer.

Casey is believed to be the first Congressional Democrat to publicly oppose the nomination, which is set for a key procedural vote Monday.

Adegbile has been picked to lead the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, but he has faced stiff opposition from Pennsylvania Republicans due to his role in the charged Abu-Jamal case. Adegbile, as part of the NAACP’s Legal Defense Fund, supervised a team in 2009 that represented Abu-Jamal before the Supreme Court as  he sought to have his death sentence overturned. …

Sen. Pat Toomey (R., Pa.) and U.S. Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R., Pa.) have vocally opposed Adegbile’s nominaton. So has District Attorney Seth Williams, a Democrat.

The procedural vote to proceed on Adegbile’s confirmation has been postponed due to inclement weather today in Washington DC, but could come up as soon as tomorrow. The widow of the police officer murdered by Abu-Jamal has started a petition to keep Adegbile from winning confirmation to the position:

Maureen Faulkner, whose husband, Daniel, was a Philadelphia police officer shot to death by black radical Mumia Abu-Jamalduring a traffic stop, has started a petition at Change.org asking senators to vote against President Obama’s nomination of attorney Debo Adegbile as assistant attorney general in the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.

Adegbile, as a former head of the Legal Defense Fund for the NAACP, was one of Abu-Jamal’s top lawyers. In 2012, Jamal’s death sentence was commuted to life imprisonment after a lengthy legal battle and three decades gushing, liberal attention.

Faulkner’s petition accuses Adegbile of benefiting from Abu-Jamal’s death-row-celebrity status.

“Attorneys working under Mr. Adegbile’s supervision have stood before rallies of Abu-Jamal supporters and openly professed that it was ‘an extreme honor’ to represent the man who put a hollow based bullet into Officer Faulkner’s brain as he lay on the ground wounded, unarmed, and defenseless,” the petition states.

The issue here is whether Adegbile was a lawyer representing a client or an activist on behalf of a murderer. Faulkner’s testimony makes it clear that his legal team seemed to think of themselves as the latter. Plus, the Abu-Jamal case wasn’t about civil rights at all, but a dispute over the death penalty and its application in this case — when states almost always apply it when available to the murder of law-enforcement officials.

The question in this case is whether Casey’s colleagues in the Senate will be swayed by united, bipartisan home-state opposition to a nominee from this White House. Normally, that would be enough to torpedo an appointment, forcing the White House to look elsewhere for a less-controversial choice. However, Harry Reid didn’t blow up the Senate just to lose a high-profile appointment, either. That puts Casey’s fellow Democrats in a big vise, and gives Republicans lots of ammunition to argue that Reid’s change was to enable confirmations of radicals rather than smooth the process for supportable nominees. If Democrats want to have that argument available to them, then perhaps they should line up behind Casey here and deny Adegbile a Justice platform for his activism.


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Good on him…

OmahaConservative on March 3, 2014 at 12:43 PM

It’s jerks like Debo Adegbile that, quite honestly, make me cringe with some frequency as a person opposed to the death penalty.

Just because I don’t particularly care for the idea of anyone being put to death by the government doesn’t mean Mumia Abu-Jamal isn’t a massive scumbag who doesn’t deserve a great deal of sympathy. But that’s exactly what he gets from idiots like this.

Red Cloud on March 3, 2014 at 12:44 PM

Thank you Senator Unibrow for doing something right for a change.

Bitter Republican in PA on March 3, 2014 at 12:47 PM

Doesn’t matter Ed. Casey just did this to appease the Pennsylvania FOP. Unless he somehow gets enough Democrats to come on board with him, his opposition comes with Harry’s blessing.

blammm on March 3, 2014 at 12:48 PM

Just because I don’t particularly care for the idea of anyone being put to death by the government doesn’t mean Mumia Abu-Jamal isn’t a massive scumbag who doesn’t deserve a great deal of sympathy. But that’s exactly what he gets from idiots like this.

Red Cloud on March 3, 2014 at 12:44 PM

Mumia Abdul-Jamal has been a liberal cause celeb for so long I don’t think any of those who support his release even have any idea what he did.

Big difference between shooing a cop in cold blood (as Mumia did) and shooting one that blew your door off the hinges in a wrong-address “no knock” SWAT raid…

Yet democrats favor freeing Mumia Abdul-Jamal for the former and would send someone who did the latter to the gas chamber.

ConstantineXI on March 3, 2014 at 12:48 PM

When I was younger and still trying to find my political stripes, one of the many major turn offs to leftism for me was the worship if this cop killer. There was a “progressive” talk radio station I used to listen to every now and then and they would play weekly recordings/reflectors by this monster. Listening to the left worship this POS along with reading a couple of Michael Moore’s books ultimately exposed how disgusting lefism really is.

jawkneemusic on March 3, 2014 at 12:49 PM

Racist bastiges.

Bishop on March 3, 2014 at 12:49 PM

I know many leftists support Mumia. I see nothing to support. What is the attraction?

cptacek on March 3, 2014 at 12:51 PM

Thanks for clearing this up for me Ed. I have either read very incomplete articles on this or need to fine tune my comprehension (both probably) I thought this nominee had been a lawyer for this creep in PA in his original trial, which I grudgingly thought he was entitled to representation, this is another whole story. I am more than a little sick of the celebrity status this killer gets so I don’t think we need to promote any of his P.R. team to work on the behalf of the American people.

Cindy Munford on March 3, 2014 at 12:55 PM

From this thread pic,
I see one of my Senators is still learning how to count…

ToddPA on March 3, 2014 at 12:56 PM

The proposed Surgeon General is an anti-gun hack.

Schadenfreude on March 3, 2014 at 12:56 PM

I know many leftists support Mumia. I see nothing to support. What is the attraction?

cptacek on March 3, 2014 at 12:51 PM

Hint: It has to do with the color of his skin, not the content of his character.

ConstantineXI on March 3, 2014 at 12:56 PM

The issue here is whether Adegbile was a lawyer representing a client or an activist on behalf of a murderer. Faulkner’s testimony makes it clear that his legal team seemed to think of themselves as the latter.

Which makes it a feature, not a bug for this regime.

rbj on March 3, 2014 at 12:58 PM

Hint: It has to do with the color of his skin, not the content of his character.

ConstantineXI on March 3, 2014 at 12:56 PM

Surely their rallying cry isn’t “free the cop killer because he is black”

cptacek on March 3, 2014 at 1:02 PM

This appointment pretty much confirms what many already expect. Cop-killer Mumia Abu Jamal will be pardoned by Obama eventually.

Rusty Nail on March 3, 2014 at 1:03 PM

This appointment pretty much confirms what many already expect. Cop-killer Mumia Abu Jamal will be pardoned by Obama eventually.

Rusty Nail on March 3, 2014 at 1:03 PM

Yes, I am afraid.

Obama is probably going to empty the prisons of lots of such people.

ConstantineXI on March 3, 2014 at 1:03 PM

Surely their rallying cry isn’t “free the cop killer because he is black”

cptacek on March 3, 2014 at 1:02 PM

It fits their mentality. “Because black” was their whole reasoning for making him President after all.

ConstantineXI on March 3, 2014 at 1:04 PM

This appointment pretty much confirms what many already expect. Cop-killer Mumia Abu Jamal will be pardoned by Obama eventually.

Rusty Nail on March 3, 2014 at 1:03 PM

He was convicted of a federal crime?

cptacek on March 3, 2014 at 1:05 PM

ConstantineXI on March 3, 2014 at 1:04 PM

Even with Trayvon Martin, they lied and said “he was such a sweet little boy just coming home from getting a drink from the store and this crazy white guy shot him down because he was a racist.” So what is the spin here, I guess is what I am asking.

cptacek on March 3, 2014 at 1:07 PM

Reid has the votes to confirm this scumbag without Bobbie’s vote, so he’ll give him a pass. Write this down. Obama will pardon Mumia on his way our the door.

L. E. Light on March 3, 2014 at 1:10 PM

I know many leftists support Mumia. I see nothing to support. What is the attraction?

cptacek on March 3, 2014 at 12:51 PM

If you read some of the comments at the Philly.com link, it appears as if some of the support is because they claim he wasn’t given a fair trial.

But that’s just their convenient excuse! We all know that if Mumia were white and named Joe Blow and did the exact same thing, they wouldn’t even give this story the time of day.

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 1:13 PM

Adegbile, as part of the NAACP’s Legal Defense Fund, supervised a team in 2009 that represented Abu-Jamal before the Supreme Court as he sought to have his death sentence overturned.

What position did Adegbile actually take as far as innocence/guilt here? What was the argument he was making in advocating that death penalty be overturned?
Anyone know the details?
I don’t…curious.

I don’t have any time for anyone who offers “he didn’t do it’ as a defense for any proceedings involving Mumia.
That said, there are other issues that can be reasonably addressed if that point is accepted.

verbaluce on March 3, 2014 at 1:15 PM

Mumia should’ve have been worm food for a long time now.
Zero is a racist, lefty jerk w/ evil values-and the azzwipes he appoints are the same.

annoyinglittletwerp on March 3, 2014 at 1:16 PM

…a Demorat doing something right?….Harry hasn’t put the screws to him yet!

KOOLAID2 on March 3, 2014 at 1:16 PM

Reid has the votes to confirm this scumbag without Bobbie’s vote, so he’ll give him a pass. Write this down. Obama will pardon Mumia on his way our the door.

L. E. Light on March 3, 2014 at 1:10 PM

Obama would have to let all the other black guys out who have committed far less egregious crimes first.

Besides Mumia will accidentally die in prison before that happens.

gracie on March 3, 2014 at 1:16 PM

Obama will pardon Mumia on his way our the door.

L. E. Light on March 3, 2014 at 1:10 PM

He can’t. Mumia was convicted by a Pennsylvania Court, so the pardon would have to come from the PA Governor.

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 1:16 PM

verbaluce on March 3, 2014 at 1:15 PM

ver boviating?

KOOLAID2 on March 3, 2014 at 1:17 PM

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 1:13 PM

Not to mention the monster gleefully admitted to murdering Officer Faulkner.

jawkneemusic on March 3, 2014 at 1:19 PM

Clearly all the white Republicans from Pennsylvania are opposed to this guy because they are evil racists.

And equally clearly this white Democrat from Pennsylvania is opposed to this guy because he is a principled lawmaker who is deeply troubled concerning the nominee’s record of activist support for a convicted felon guilty of the murder of a Philadelphia police officer.

I just wanted to clear that up for any of the liberals here who might be suffering some cognitive dissonance with regard to this Democrat Senator. Just relax, and breathe deeply…

s1im on March 3, 2014 at 1:23 PM

He can’t. Mumia was convicted by a Pennsylvania Court, so the pardon would have to come from the PA Governor.

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 1:16 PM

Since when has an inconvenient little detail like THAT stopped President-Dictator (for life?) Hussein doing “what he wants”?

ConstantineXI on March 3, 2014 at 1:24 PM

What position did Adegbile actually take as far as innocence/guilt here? What was the argument he was making in advocating that death penalty be overturned?
Anyone know the details?
I don’t…curious.

verbaluce on March 3, 2014 at 1:15 PM

The death penalty was vacated because of jury instruction issues (i.e., he wasn’t allowed to offer mitigating evidence in the penalty phase). It had nothing to do with his guilt.

The D.A. (ironically, the same one who is pushing for him not to be confirmed) decided not to retry, leaving him with life imprisonment.

The real issue is his use of extrajudicial pressure to push a civil rights agenda (facts be damned). The person at the DOJ charged with civil rights concerns should not have the appearance of such a hardline, extreme stance.

blammm on March 3, 2014 at 1:25 PM

I think this Administration is using this appointment to see how much they can get away with.

gullxn on March 3, 2014 at 1:43 PM

This is a show vote for Casey. He has voted consistently for every part of the Obama and Democrats agenda. Look at his record.

Reid has the votes to pass this nomination and Casey already knows it. This is just his fig leaf.

Pennsylvania- you don’t get the government you deserve. You get the government you vote for. This is the result.

Marcus Traianus on March 3, 2014 at 1:52 PM

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 1:13 PM

Not to mention the monster gleefully admitted to murdering Officer Faulkner.

jawkneemusic on March 3, 2014 at 1:19 PM

What’s even scarier is how this cop killer is adored and worshiped abroad. From his wiki page:

Abu-Jamal has been made an honorary citizen of about 25 cities around the world, including Copenhagen, Montreal, Palermo and Paris.In 2001, he received the sixth biennial Erich Mühsam Prize, eponymously named after an anarcho-communist essayist, which recognizes activism in line with that of its namesake. In October 2002, he was made an honorary member of the German political organization Society of People Persecuted by the Nazi Regime – Federation of Anti-Fascists (VVN-BdA)

On April 29, 2006, a newly paved road in the Parisian suburb of Saint-Denis was named Rue Mumia Abu-Jamal in his honor.

After this road-naming, the US House sponsored a Resolution that condemned the changing of the name. All of the Pennsylvania House Democrats except for one voted for the Resolution. Murtha cast a “Did Not Vote”.

But curiously, many of the major House Democrats from New York sided with the cop killer and voted against the Resolution. Those tolerant Democrats included Anthony Weiner, Chuckles Rangel, Tubby Nadler, and Nita Lowey.

Other House Democrats siding with the cop killer: O’bama pal Neil Abercrombie (now the Governor of Hawai’i), Maxine Waters, and Jesse Junior Jackson.

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 1:55 PM

For once, Bob Casey gets it right.

Good Lt on March 3, 2014 at 2:03 PM

What position did Adegbile actually take as far as innocence/guilt here? What was the argument he was making in advocating that death penalty be overturned?
Anyone know the details?
I don’t…curious.

verbaluce on March 3, 2014 at 1:15 PM

The death penalty was vacated because of jury instruction issues (i.e., he wasn’t allowed to offer mitigating evidence in the penalty phase). It had nothing to do with his guilt.

The D.A. (ironically, the same one who is pushing for him not to be confirmed) decided not to retry, leaving him with life imprisonment.

The real issue is his use of extrajudicial pressure to push a civil rights agenda (facts be damned). The person at the DOJ charged with civil rights concerns should not have the appearance of such a hardline, extreme stance.

blammm on March 3, 2014 at 1:25 PM

Thanks.
So it seems he’s not the ‘Free Mumia’ guy some try to portray him as, and when Ed refers to him as a ‘Mumia-defender’ – perhaps some clarification is warranted. Or maybe just a less intentionally provocative phrase.
That he pushed a ‘civil rights agenda’ – seems that’s a bit of a trajectory for his nomination to this position.
Maybe it would be more intellectually honest for those who oppose him to oppose any Civil Rights Division at DOJ at all.

verbaluce on March 3, 2014 at 2:03 PM

“Why does Senator X hate cops and want them to die?”

I hope he’s confirmed. The campaign ads write themselves.

spinach.chin on March 3, 2014 at 2:13 PM

That he pushed a ‘civil rights agenda’ – seems that’s a bit of a trajectory for his nomination to this position.
Maybe it would be more intellectually honest for those who oppose him to oppose any Civil Rights Division at DOJ at all.

verbaluce on March 3, 2014 at 2:03 PM

It went well beyond that though. The “Free Mumia” meme has been pushed so much that people don’t even know what the legal issue was. Under Adegbile’s leadership, the NAACP still continues to protest and stage media campaigns to clear a guilty name. People think that there are no facts to support his conviction following the recanting of witness testimony post-trial. There is still physical evidence to find him guilty. Plus, absent the witnesses admitting perjury against their self-interests, I don’t find multiple recantations outside the courtroom to be more credible than testimony under oath.

Also, if we’re going to have civil rights laws, they need to be applied evenhandedly. Given the DOJ’s desire to view anything as proof of racial animus even when the facts suggest otherwise (e.g., Travyon Martin, the Beer Summit, voter ID, New Black Panther Party), it’s easy to take issue with the nomination of someone who volunteered his legal services to a client who already had personally retained high caliber, well compensated representation. If you think that an NAACP LDF attorney would ever view something at odds with the NAACP, I have a bridge to sell you.

blammm on March 3, 2014 at 2:41 PM

Thanks.
So it seems he’s not the ‘Free Mumia’ guy some try to portray him as, and when Ed refers to him as a ‘Mumia-defender’ – perhaps some clarification is warranted. Or maybe just a less intentionally provocative phrase.
That he pushed a ‘civil rights agenda’ – seems that’s a bit of a trajectory for his nomination to this position.
Maybe it would be more intellectually honest for those who oppose him to oppose any Civil Rights Division at DOJ at all.

verbaluce on March 3, 2014 at 2:03 PM

Naw.

ladyingray on March 3, 2014 at 2:45 PM

Maybe it would be more intellectually honest for those who oppose him to oppose any Civil Rights Division at DOJ at all.

verbaluce on March 3, 2014 at 2:03 PM

Verbose,

Maybe it would have been more intellectually honest if your parents told you the doctor dropped you on your head at birth. And that you were going to “grow up” to be the pudding head you did. Maybe your parents voted against the funding of more short busses so you could have attended the local ‘special school’.

Oh, well. Stuff happens.

ZeusGoose on March 3, 2014 at 2:56 PM

That he pushed a ‘civil rights agenda’ – seems that’s a bit of a trajectory for his nomination to this position.

Maybe it would be more intellectually honest for those who oppose him to oppose any Civil Rights Division at DOJ at all.

verbaloom on March 3, 2014 at 2:03 PM

Only one projecting here is you.

He’s being supported by all of the major civil rights leaders. But in your world he never pushed civil rights?

As for the Civil Rights Division at DOJ, the Inspector General’s report shows that it’s a political joke.

The report also outlined concerns by section employees that attorneys could not pursue cases against black defendants for the benefit of white victims, and located emails in which current and former voting section attorneys criticized and mocked Christopher Coates, the section chief, for his work in a discrimination case in Mississippi against a black official who used fraud and lawlessness to discriminate against the white minority.

More from that report:

Threats were made to African American employees by other Justice Department staff.

The threats were made because the black employees were willing to work on cases like the New Black Panther voter intimidation case and a case in Mississippi involving a black wrongdoer and a white victim.

You really should have a shovel for each hand.

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 3:07 PM

You really should have a shovel for each hand.

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 3:07 PM

…needs a scoop or a pail!…all the shit runs off the shovel!

KOOLAID2 on March 3, 2014 at 3:23 PM

Reid has the votes to confirm this scumbag without Bobbie’s vote, so he’ll give him a pass. Write this down. Obama will pardon Mumia on his way our the door.

L. E. Light on March 3, 2014 at 1:10 PM

Odds are that if Barry pardons him, he will meet an unexpected visit from an unidentified hit squad not long after he leaves prison.
III

Sgt Stryker on March 3, 2014 at 3:29 PM

WTF is a “hollow based bullet??”

brainy435 on March 3, 2014 at 3:36 PM

Non-story… Ol’ Bob is just posturing to get something extra. Harry either throws him a bone, or pulls out Bob’s closet-skeleton file. Either way, he’ll get in line before the votes are cast.

Marcola on March 3, 2014 at 3:46 PM

You really should have a shovel for each hand.

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 3:07 PM

Well said, sir! Plus I like your canned vegetables and pineapples.

…needs a scoop or a pail!…all the shit runs off the shovel!

KOOLAID2 on March 3, 2014 at 3:23 PM

I think we’re into backhoe or serious earth excavator territory here!

ZeusGoose on March 3, 2014 at 3:56 PM

The fun thing to see here will be how Cory Booker votes on the nomination — New Jersey isn’t Pennsylvania, but it’s right across the river, and everyone in Southern New Jersey who gets their news from Philadelphia TV and radio stations and the Philly papers — including area law enforcement — knows about the Danny Faulkner-Mumia Abu Jamal case.

So unlike your average liberal from Illinois or California, Booker’s vote will have consequences within his No. 2 media market, at a time when he’s also up for re-election this coming November (it’s also an issue for Bob Melendez, but his term just started again last year, so he can vote for confirmation and not have to worry about it biting him until 2018).

jon1979 on March 3, 2014 at 4:01 PM

Doesn’t matter Ed. Casey just did this to appease the Pennsylvania FOP. Unless he somehow gets enough Democrats to come on board with him, his opposition comes with Harry’s blessing.

blammm on March 3, 2014 at 12:48 PM

Bingo. Don’t go gettin’ all clarity and such.

Jaibones on March 3, 2014 at 4:12 PM

So it seems he’s not the ‘Free Mumia’ guy some try to portray him as, and when Ed refers to him as a ‘Mumia-defender’ – perhaps some clarification is warranted. Or maybe just a less intentionally provocative phrase.
That he pushed a ‘civil rights agenda’ – seems that’s a bit of a trajectory for his nomination to this position.
Maybe it would be more intellectually honest for those who oppose him to oppose any Civil Rights Division at DOJ at all.

verbadeuce on March 3, 2014 at 2:03 PM

verbalduece, on the wrong side of every issue. EVERY single time. Having no moral compass does that to you.

FRY Mumia!

HumpBot Salvation on March 3, 2014 at 4:24 PM

Fry Wesley Cook.

Jaibones on March 3, 2014 at 4:32 PM

Whoa-it’s Casey? He lives!! I haven’t seen him since the last election. To what do we owe this honor?

ImmigrantsWife on March 3, 2014 at 4:50 PM

This is a show vote for Casey. He has voted consistently for every part of the Obama and Democrats agenda. Look at his record.

Reid has the votes to pass this nomination and Casey already knows it. This is just his fig leaf.
Pennsylvania- you don’t get the government you deserve. You get the government you vote for. This is the result.
Marcus Traianus on March 3, 2014 at 1:52 PM

True, but there is a large conservative population between Pittsburgh and Philly and we’ve been working hard to change our gov’t. We got rid of Obamacare shill Dahlkemper and Pelosi’s pet “blue dog Dem” Altmire and replaced them with Kelley and Rothfus. Specter didn’t even survive the primary and we beat a huge labor goon with Toomey. After 8 yrs of Fast Eddie we put Corbett in for Governor. Republicans (though many Rinos) have the state House and Senate. Hopefully they played their cards well with the census and didn’t screw up the redistricting after PA lost a Rep. Anyway, we’re trying!!

ImmigrantsWife on March 3, 2014 at 5:03 PM

Maybe it would be more intellectually honest for those who oppose him to oppose any Civil Rights Division at DOJ at all.

verbaloon on March 3, 2014 at 2:03 PM

“In conference” again?

Hypothetical question, courtesy of a poster in another forum:

Here is a hypothetical question.
If an administration that was headed by a member of a minority group that made up less than 20% of the population proceeded to appoint a percentage of people from the same minority group to which he belonged which far exceeded that 20%, would that on its face be evidence of discrimination against people not in that minority
group?

I’m just asking.

Bonus question: Is it racist of me to ask?

Del Dolemonte on March 3, 2014 at 5:04 PM