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U.S. Senate Candidate Challenges Eric Holder on Justice Issues

By       Message Roger Shuler       (Page 1 of 3 pages)     Permalink

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opednews.com Headlined to H3 10/25/10

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Cross Posted at Legal Schnauzer

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A candidate for the U.S. Senate has asked for a meeting with Attorney General Eric Holder to discuss justice-related concerns in Alabama.

William G. "Bill" Barnes, a Democrat from Birmingham, is running a long-shot campaign against incumbent Republican Richard Shelby. Polls show Shelby with a comfortable lead, thanks partly to his massive campaign war chest, but Barnes does not intend to go quietly.

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In a letter to Holder, Barnes essentially states that the U.S. Justice Department acted in a highly questionable manner during the George W. Bush administration--and has not been much better under Barack Obama. (See full letter at the end of this post.) Writes Barnes:

The primary issue is fostering public confidence in the fairness and thoroughness of Justice Department' s work under your watch. To be sure, you provided an eloquent speech on civil rights recently at the University of Alabama. But it was reported that you declined to receive any questions then, just as you failed to respond to questions from USA Today reporters compiling their alarming judicial findings of federal prosecutorial misconduct

With that background, I seek your personal assurance that the Justice Department is operating in accordance with its leaders' highest ideals and longstanding expectations, especially given the grave threats now to financial, environmental and civil liberties proving so alarming to the public.

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Barnes says he is concerned that civil and criminal proceedings will not lead to just compensation for Alabama victims of the BP oil spill. He also notes that the Obama administration has had a limp response to a USA Today series outlining widespread prosecutorial misconduct in the federal justice system.

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I live in Birmingham, Alabama, and work in higher education. I became interested in justice-related issues after experiencing gross judicial corruption in Alabama state courts. This corruption has a strong political component. The corrupt judges are (more...)

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