Saturday, October 09, 2004

Bush's Civil Rights Record Is Criticized, Silently

The New York Times
October 10, 2004

Bush's Civil Rights Record Is Criticized, Silently

WASHINGTON, Oct. 9 (AP) - The United States Commission on Civil Rights voted on Friday to wait until after next month's election to discuss a report critical of the Bush administration's civil rights record. Republican members had objected to the report's timing.

The report remains posted on the commission's Web site (, despite objections from Republican commissioners.

The report says Mr. Bush "has neither exhibited leadership on pressing civil rights issues, nor taken actions that matched his words" on the subject. It finds fault with Mr. Bush's funding requests for civil rights enforcement; his positions on voting rights, educational opportunity and affirmative action; and his actions against hate crimes.

The report said, however, that Mr. Bush is committed to help people with disabilities and praised him for "a commendably diverse cabinet and moderately diverse judiciary."

A White House spokesman, Ken Lisaius, said, "President Bush is fully committed to making a real difference in the lives of all Americans, and his record reflects that goal."

The commission chairwoman, Mary Frances Berry, who lists her political affiliation as independent, said that the report's timing had nothing to do with the election, a view disputed by a Republican commissioner, Jennifer C. Braceras.