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Bill Lann Lee

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 24, 1997
In regard to John Lewis' Nov. 19 commentary on Bill Lann Lee, I would like to ask a simple question: What is fair? For all of Lewis' talk of "fairness," does it strike him as ironic that the very program of racial preferences that he is lauding would put Lee's children at a distinct disadvantage when they apply to college simply because they are of the wrong color? No matter that Asians in general, and Chinese in particular, have suffered from horrendous amounts of racism in this country's history, they are now the ones being told to attend lesser schools so that spaces may be made for equally or less qualified, but underrepresented, blacks and Hispanics.
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April 5, 2009 | Paul West
In the annals of capital partisanship, their names are boldfaced: the candidates for America's highest civil rights post who never got confirmed. During the last Democratic administration, conservatives succeeded in blocking Senate approval of Lani Guinier and Bill Lann Lee to head the civil rights division at the Justice Department. Now they're gearing up to put Thomas Perez, a Maryland lawyer and President Obama's nominee for the job, through the grinder.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 10, 1997 | ANGELA E. OH, Angela E. Oh is a Los Angeles-based attorney and civil rights activist
The uncertainty in the nomination of Bill Lann Lee as our nation's top enforcement officer in the civil rights division of the Department of Justice represents the kind of public sacrifice we should never be forced to make. We stand to lose one of our most gifted, highly qualified and deserving nominations to political gamesmanship.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 22, 2000
It seems to me that Los Angeles should, as far as possible, avoid any meaningful agreement on police reform with the U.S. Justice Department, because of the impending change in the administration. An agreement now would lock the city into a long-term process that might be significantly different from future government policy. In a few months, a new administration will take office and there will be new faces and new requirements. Almost certainly there will be a new point man. Bill Lann Lee is in office now only through the legerdemain of President Clinton.
NEWS
February 17, 1999 | ERIC LICHTBLAU, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The White House said Tuesday that attorney Bill Lann Lee of Los Angeles again will be nominated as the nation's top civil rights enforcer, a move sure to reignite opposition from critics of affirmative action who blocked his nomination 14 months ago. Lee is acting assistant attorney general for civil rights, a post that often has been a lightning rod for controversy. The White House said late Tuesday that President Clinton will try again to make Lee's position permanent.
NEWS
December 9, 1997 | JONATHAN PETERSON and RONALD J. OSTROW, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
The White House began a campaign of public pressure Monday in a renewed effort to win Senate confirmation for Bill Lann Lee, President Clinton's choice to be the nation's chief civil rights enforcer. Atty. Gen. Janet Reno, appearing at a ceremony marking the 40th anniversary of the Justice Department's civil rights division, urged an end to the Senate deadlock that has kept Lee from taking charge of that unit. "Civil rights in America should not be about politics," she declared.
NEWS
August 4, 2000 | ERIC LICHTBLAU, TIMES STAFF WRITER
President Clinton, stymied for three years in his effort to install former Los Angeles attorney Bill Lann Lee as the nation's top civil rights officer, used a tried-and-true backdoor method Thursday to appoint Lee to the top Justice Department post. Clinton waited until Congress was not in session and used what is known as a recess appointment to make Lee the assistant attorney general for civil rights, bypassing the normal confirmation process in the Senate.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 10, 1997 | K. CONNIE KANG and JONATHAN PETERSON, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
Stepping up public pressure, a broad coalition of Los Angeles-area political, civil rights and community leaders Tuesday joined other supporters across the country to urge the U.S. Senate to approve embattled Bill Lann Lee as the nation's chief civil rights enforcer.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 18, 1997 | HENRY WEINSTEIN, TIMES LEGAL AFFAIRS WRITER
One of the nation's top public interest lawyers could soon be leaving Los Angeles for a bigger job--chief of the U.S. Justice Department's civil rights division. White House sources disclosed recently that Bill Lann Lee, western regional counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, is one of two finalists to succeed Deval Patrick as assistant attorney general for civil rights.
NEWS
August 4, 2000 | ERIC LICHTBLAU, TIMES STAFF WRITER
President Clinton, stymied for three years in his effort to install former Los Angeles attorney Bill Lann Lee as the nation's top civil rights officer, used a tried-and-true backdoor method Thursday to appoint Lee to the top Justice Department post. Clinton waited until Congress was not in session and used what is known as a recess appointment to make Lee the assistant attorney general for civil rights, bypassing the normal confirmation process in the Senate.
NEWS
May 14, 2000 | HENRY WEINSTEIN and ERIC LICHTBLAU, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
As a longtime lawyer for civil rights groups in Los Angeles, Bill Lann Lee built a reputation as a skilled litigator whose goal was to solve problems rather than collect scalps. Now, as the nation's acting assistant attorney general for civil rights, Lee has returned home with all the might of the federal government at his disposal as he spearheads its efforts to reform the Los Angeles Police Department.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 22, 1999
A coalition of elected officials and civil rights leaders called Wednesday for the immediate confirmation of Bill Lann Lee as assistant attorney general for civil rights at the U.S. Department of Justice. "We're here because we believe this Congress has to approve the nomination as quickly as possible," Assembly Speaker Antonio Villaraigosa told a news conference at the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor offices near downtown.
OPINION
March 14, 1999
Bill Lann Lee should be confirmed as assistant attorney general for civil rights (March 6). While we at the Anti-Defamation League differ with many of his positions on racial preferences, we respect his prior work with the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, his credentials as an attorney and his qualification for this position. His responsibilities at the Justice Department extend far beyond the issue of affirmative action. He has asked for a 19% increase in the Department of Justice budget to prosecute hate-crime perpetrators as well as to pursue enforcement of other civil rights violations.
NEWS
March 6, 1999 | From Reuters
President Clinton on Friday again nominated Bill Lann Lee to be assistant attorney general for civil rights, a post Lee has held on an acting basis since his nomination was rejected more than a year ago. Lee met at the White House with Clinton for a private ceremony despite complaints from conservative Republicans in Congress that Lee has been too zealous in enforcing affirmative action laws.
NEWS
February 17, 1999 | ERIC LICHTBLAU, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The White House said Tuesday that attorney Bill Lann Lee of Los Angeles again will be nominated as the nation's top civil rights enforcer, a move sure to reignite opposition from critics of affirmative action who blocked his nomination 14 months ago. Lee is acting assistant attorney general for civil rights, a post that often has been a lightning rod for controversy. The White House said late Tuesday that President Clinton will try again to make Lee's position permanent.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 30, 1998
I appreciated and largely agreed with your Sept. 21 editorial, "Race Panel's Lost Chance," about the president's commission on race. However, I think that it was unrealistic for you to expect a bold, Kerner Commission-style final report from the panel. The primary reason for this, I believe, is because voices conscious of race have been widely intimidated by the voices of resentment. Observations on today's racial disparities are often attacked out of hand by pundits and politicians as "racially divisive."
NEWS
July 14, 1998 | RONALD J. OSTROW, TIMES STAFF WRITER
"Nothing glamorous." Just the "nuts and bolts of law enforcement." Bill Lann Lee uses those phrases repeatedly in describing his job as acting assistant attorney general for civil rights. And in case a listener misses the point, Lee finds yet another way to make it during his first full-scale interview since taking command of the Justice Department's Civil Rights division six months ago. "We're not really talking about things that are controversial or way out," he says.
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