Magazine article Insight on the News

U.S. Civil Rights Commission Now Has Legal Troubles. (News Alert!)

Magazine article Insight on the News

U.S. Civil Rights Commission Now Has Legal Troubles. (News Alert!)

Article excerpt

The U.S. Civil Rights Commission usually asks the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate possible violations of the law upon which it stumbles. But with Commissioner Mary Frances Berry at the helm, she and another obstinate commissioner may be running afoul of the law themselves. The Landmark Legal Foundation has asked the Justice Department to investigate why Commissioner Victoria Wilson is refusing to leave her post now that her term has expired.

With the backing of Berry, Clinton-appointee Wilson has remained on the commission even though President George W. Bush has appointed a new commissioner to fill the vacancy. Apparently, Berry regards her bond with Wilson as stronger than the law. By any legal standard, Wilson's term has expired because she was appointed to serve out the six-year term of another Clinton appointee, the late Leon Higginbotham, whose term ended Nov. 29, 2001. Democratic Commissioner Christopher Edley admitted the obvious back in June, telling fellow commissioner Abigail Themstrom that the eight-seat commission would be divided 4-4 in December, once Wilson's term expired. …

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