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January 12, 2003

Justice Dept Killing Civil Service Hiring

More on Bush administration destroying civil service in federal government:

Now the Justice Department has killed civil service hiring of new employees in favor of political appointees screening all new employees for ideological purity.

The focus of the most recent controversy is the "Honors Program" which hires recent law graduates for the Justice Department. The results have been dramatic:

A half-dozen school placement officers said they had noticed a marked shift to the right in the political makeup of students who were approached for interviews this year.

At Columbia University Law School, for example, the head of the campus Federalist Society chapter set a school record by winning interviews at five separate Justice Department divisions, according to public interest law dean Ellen Chapnick. The Federalist Society is a conservative legal group whose membership includes some of the Justice Department's top officials.

Now, it may well be that liberals are less interested in joining a Justice Department of John Ashcroft, but historically both liberals and conservatives have joined the day-to-day enforcement programs of the federal government precisely because they have a reputation for NOT being politicized, except on the more obvious high-profile political hot potatos.

But as with the rest of the federal government, the Bush administration is trying to turn the whole civil service into one massive spoils system rewarding conservative cronies and proteges.

Posted by Nathan at January 12, 2003 10:09 AM

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