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Civil Rights Panel Member Resigns, Citing ‘Partisanship’

By Vaishali Honawar — March 22, 2005 1 min read
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Russell G. Redenbaugh, the longest-serving member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, has resigned, citing “excessive partisanship” within the commission and concerns that it is spending money irresponsibly.

In January, a Republican majority took control of the civil rights panel, with President Bush nominating former Department of Education civil rights enforcer Gerald A. Reynolds as the commission’s chairman.

Mr. Redenbaugh told The Washington Post last week that he decided to resign because of the commission’s failure to appoint an independent agent to manage the commission’s funds.

Mr. Reynolds said in an interview last week that Mr. Redenbaugh’s departure was “a loss for the commission. It is unfortunate.”

Kenneth L. Marcus, the commission’s staff director, said that the commission now has an independent auditor who is conducting a balance-sheet audit.

In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., Mr. Redenbaugh, a political Independent who was a 1990 congressional appointee to the commission, also pointed to what he said were “slanted reports” from the Civil Rights Commission.

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