Appeals Court Upholds Ike Brown Conviction

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

A federal appeals panel has upheld the conviction of Noxubee County Democratic chairman Ike Brown for violating the rights of white voters.

A three-judge panel of the 5th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in New Orleans upheld a 2007 ruling by U.S. District Judge Tom S. Lee, siding with the Justice Department against Brown. The panel's decision came Friday.

In a rare case that used the 1965 Voting Rights Act to assert that white voters were disenfranchised by a black official, the Justice Department had accused Brown of trying to limit whites' participation in local elections.

The 5th Circuit panel agreed with Lee, saying Brown and the local Democratic Executive Committee "engaged in a series of episodic practices in obtaining a large number of black absentee ballots, in preventing the proper challenges to absentee ballots, and in permitting numerous instances of improper voter assistance, that diluted the votes of white Democrats."

Brown, reached Monday by cell phone, denied that he tried to limit anyone's rights. Brown said he was proud of his efforts to get more blacks to vote, whether by absentee ballot or getting them to the polls.

Brown said he would consider an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. A Justice Department spokesman had no immediate comment.

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  • by Mary on Mar 3, 2009 at 06:27 AM
    He is a snake.Does anyone know which local mayoral campaign is he a part of? Brown does need to be held accountable for what he has done.Brown's politics are not welcome in our hometown Meridian.
  • by Concerned on Mar 2, 2009 at 09:57 PM
    This is typical of our area. It is deemed as fair for the black establishment to disenfranchise the white population due to the legacy of years gone by. The oppressed of one generation make the best oppressors of the next. If one wants to see this in action simply look at the county offices and appointed positions and how they are managed. Ineptitude is protected in the name of racism.
  • by Anonymous on Mar 2, 2009 at 01:46 PM
    He was removed as Democratic Party chairman and ordered to stay out of the circuit clerk's office two weeks before any primary election (which are overseen by the Democrats). I don't remember any actual punishment other than that. It's a shame. He's a snake.
  • by Mary on Mar 2, 2009 at 01:37 PM
    It was wrong for blacks to be intimidated and prevented from voting in the past. It is equally wrong for Brown or anyone else to try to do this against whites, regardless of the black majority population in Noxubee County. Brown seems to think it is all right. Talk to him. He may not have said that in court, but he will say it right to your face. What is wrong is always wrong. Registered voters of any and every color should be able to cast their ballots in peace. Mr. Brown needs to be held to account for what he has done.
  • by Thomas Location: Decatur on Mar 2, 2009 at 10:41 AM
    Could someone possibly advise the sentence he was finally given if known.
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