March 11th, 2009, Fairfax, VA—Americans for Limited Government President Bill Wilson today sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee urging them to reject President Barack Obama’s recent nomination to drug czar, Gil Kerlikowske “as a disgrace to the office for which the Senate is being asked to confirm him to.”
“Gil Kerlikowske, who would serve as the nation’s drug czar, was soft on crime and soft on drugs as Seattle Police Chief,” said Wilson in a statement.
Wilson cited Kerlikowske’s tolerance of marijuana possession, his “soft” police tactics, and his failure to discipline officer misconduct as disqualifying him from the nation’s top anti-drug law enforcement post.
“This is a man who 88 percent of the Seattle Police Officers Guild once voted no confidence in after he ordered officers to stand idly by during a 2001 Mardi Gras riot,” said Wilson in a statement.
“Dozens of people were injured, several women were sexually assaulted, and an innocent man got killed amid the violence. When the victim’s family sued, the city settled out of court for $1.75 million and was forced to acknowledge that Kerlikowske’s police strategy had presented a public safety threat,” said Wilson.
The letter specifically notes that Kerlikowske condoned the creation of an “arrest-free zone” to dispense health information to criminals. Wilson cited an “analysis by the mayor’s staff [that] showed the program made little difference in the lives of those it targets.”
Wilson also cited that the NAACP, along with the Minority Executive Directors Coalition, called for his resignation in 2007 after an incident of racial profiling that “Kerlikowske repeatedly refused to discipline officers and gave others only a slap on the wrist…”
Wilson believes that Kerlikowske’s nomination “follows a pattern by President Obama of nominating some of the most ill-suited persons for particular posts.”
“Either President Obama is deliberately attempting to lower the bar, or this is simply one the single-most botched series of appointments by a sitting president ever,” Wilson concluded.
Interview Availability: Please contact Alex Rosenwald at (703)383-0880 or at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange an interview with ALG President Bill Wilson.
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