Former White House Communications Deputy Tim Griffin Resigns after Evidence Ties Him to Alleged Voter Suppression

The White House installed Griffin as U.S. Attorney without Senate approval using a provision they’d slipped into the Patriot Act.

Big media is ignoring the story that former White House Deputy Communications Director — and former RNC Research Director — Tim Griffin resigned as the U.S. Attorney in Arkansas last week after evidence revealed he was directly involved in alleged voter suppression in the 2004 elections.

This may be the first time you’ve heard of the illegal tactic of “caging” voters, but if BBC investigator Greg Palast is correct, it will not be the last.

Caging is a form of voter suppression involving registered mail. Typically, campaigns send registered letters to voters who are are unlikely to respond — soldiers serving overseas, for example. A list is compiled of the voters whose mail is returned marked undeliverable, or “caged.” On election day, when people on the caging list arrive to vote, campaign operatives are on hand to float challenges to their residency in the precinct. Palast says caging is a felony.

Palast recently obtained hundreds of emails sent by White House officials to Bush-Cheney operatives during the 2004 campaign. Among these were emails containing caging lists sent by Griffin, apparently in his role as communications deputy. Late last week, Palast agreed to show Griffin’s emails to Rep. John Conyers, chairman of the Judiciary Committee. On Thursday, Griffin abruptly announced his resignation in Little Rock, citing an urgent need to work in the private sector. (Some sources say Griffin is in negotiations to join Fred Thompson’s presidential campaign; while one wag suggests Griffin resigned “to spend more time in jail.“)

Griffin’s name first surfaced nationally in the investigation into the Bush administration’s unprecedented firing of eight U.S. attorneys last December. He has been depicted as a protege of Karl Rove with no real prosecutorial experience who was chosen to replace Bud Cummins as federal prosecutor in the Little Rock office. His appointment created a controversy in Arkansas — and in the U.S. Senate — when it was revealed that the White House installed him without Senate approval using a provision on “interim” appointments they’d slipped into the Patriot Act.

Why would the U.S. Dept. of Justice replace a seasoned, successful prosecutor with a political operative whose last job was working for the White House communications department? Here’s how David Iglesias, the New Mexico U.S. attorney who was also fired in December, described why the Bushies wanted him out of the way:

“They wanted a political operative who happened to be a US attorney … and when they got somebody who actually took his oath to the Constitution seriously, they were appalled and they wanted me out of there. The two strikes against me was, I was not political, I didn’t help them out on their bogus voter fraud prosecutions.”

None of this is new, by the way. In 2004, Palast, working then as now for the BBC, accused Griffin and the GOP of caging the votes of African-American service personnel who lived in Florida but were serving in Iraq — but this, too went unnoticed by America’s corporate media.

VIDEO
See Greg Palast’s BBC report on vote fraud, including caging, from Oct. 2004.

Update: The story is even older than I indicated previously. Palast first reported it in 2004, not 2006, as I’d stated earlier. Thanks to Brad Friedman for the correct date.

Update 2: Here is a link to additional posts on voter fraud by Greg Palast at Bradblog.

14 Comments

  • nikolai
    June 3, 2007 - 10:01 am | Permalink

    “BIG MEDIA IS IGNORING the story that former White House Deputy Communications Director Tim Griffin resigned as the U.S. Attorney in Arkansas last week after evidence revealed he was directly involved in voter suppression in the 2004 elections.”
    Big media ignoring very pertinent news stories is why I wrote the editor of the Arizona Republic and cancelled my subscription. This is what Americans need to do, write their local rags and let the editors know that until they publish real news they will no longer subscribe. A lot of my neighbors (also) no longer take the newspaper. “News”paper; what a joke. American Idol is news? The latest American Idol winner “Jordan” was on the FRONT PAGE THREE TIMES! Hell, 10 servicemen killed in Iraq in one day doesn’t get nearly that much press! Something is wrong with this picture and I for one, at least, will no longer support or even tolerate this travesty, and this is what I told the AZ Republic, among other things. C’mon Americans, start using the power of the pocketbook and let these shysters know you want real news!

  • big dave from queens
    June 3, 2007 - 12:23 pm | Permalink

    amen to nikolai. Either media outlets give the news or we hit them in the pocketbook. They’ll learn one way or the other.

  • cee robin
    June 3, 2007 - 12:41 pm | Permalink

    Yes it’s truly shameful that MSM is paying little or no attention to this; however where is the accountability? Is congress going to turn over this evidence to the justice dept? Are they first going to impeach Gonzo, then recommend the evidence to the DOJ? This is not only shameful, but criminal…How many investigations does it take ?

  • Larry from C
    June 3, 2007 - 3:25 pm | Permalink

    I urge everyone reading this article to contact their local media by phone, e-mail or fax and demand coverage of this story. Include a link to this article or GregPalast.com. They will NOT cover this story unless we force them to. Tell all your friends, family etc. Be relentless. This story is evidence of two stolen presidential elections!

  • rob
    June 3, 2007 - 7:08 pm | Permalink

    The MSM continue hammering the bogus JFK “terrist” plot, but they are not covering the Tim Griffin caging story. Hmmm.. Well media are in the business of delivering messages for money. (commercials) Their so called news could be considered a carefully constructed propaganda infomercial for the Bush gang. Maybe they are complicit so that they can stay in good stead with the Bush criminal cabal. This all but assures favorable treatment by the FCC, which translates into big money. Allowing media consolidation for example. One hand washes the other. Maybe their cooperation is a way to stave off the taxing of advertising. It appears to me that they are all in cahoots with each other. Maybe there never was a time when the major media played the roll as government watchdog. They sure aren’t playing that roll now. What a sham. What a shame.

    ROBinDALLAS

  • smchris
    June 3, 2007 - 7:10 pm | Permalink

    Used to be it was only a crime if you got caught. Now it’s only a crime if anybody gives a rat’s ass. Wonderful country, isn’t it?

  • NCBlueneck
    June 4, 2007 - 9:05 am | Permalink

    To ROBINinDALLAS:

    >>Well media are in the business of delivering messages for money. (commercials)

    This statement is true on it’s face, but there is a subtext you missed; The media are in the business of delivering messages for money. (The moneyed elite. Bush’s “base”) The MSM exists to push the “elite’s” agendas, not ours. Cancelling your subscriptions and turning off tee-vee news is a good start.

  • June 4, 2007 - 3:08 pm | Permalink

    This older (Feb 28, 2007)story provides more detail on the creation of a job for Griffin within the Arkansas Attorneys office to be “installed to” in order to be in place when they tried to force Cummins to resign. Spotlight on H.E. Cummins, Eastern Arkansas

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  • blogbob
    June 5, 2007 - 8:31 pm | Permalink

    What did you expect from the most corrupt administration–ever? Rove (our real president) and Shooter/Chimpy make Nixon look like a Sunday School teacher. And yes, the “apprehension” of “Muslim Extremists” on Saturday and the announcement of an indictment against Rep. William Jefferson (D-LA) on Monday were designed to keep MSM attention away from Griffin & Rove’s FELONY.

  • mjlupi
    June 7, 2007 - 2:18 pm | Permalink

    I have been emailing Congressman Conyers, different news shows, etc., in an effort to get them to pick up the story. It is like throwing a superball against a brick wall. I can only imagine how Greg Palast must feel.

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  • Louis Osborne
    November 2, 2010 - 12:00 am | Permalink

    I predict this will come out better than any are predicting. We don’t want to jinx it when you’re overly optimistic and the media desire to lower our expectations to be able to suppress the vote.

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