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Parker, September 13, 2000 We note that Governor Richardson's withdrawal from his nomination as the next Commerce Secretary is due to ongoing grand jury investigation of possible corruption related to political campaign contribution.We feel neither vindication or disappointment over this outcome.Richardson’s actions raise serious questions about his judgment and sense of fairness, requisite qualifications of a presidential Cabinet nominee.Until Richardson concedes and apologizes for his actions, we will continue to object to his nomination.He should admit his rush to judgment in attempting to identify Dr.Lee as the possible espionage suspect, as well as provocatively heightening suspicions about the loyalty of Chinese-Americans during a period of intense congressional and media scrutiny.
In many other reported cases of security violations, administrative action rather than prosecution was pursued..
Please note that our opposition to a Richardson appointment as the Secretary of Commerce or any high-level Cabinet position should not be construed in any way as opposition to Hispanic or other ethnic minority nominees. Lee occurred at the heels of a 5-month Congressional committee investigation seeking to determine whether China stole American military secrets through espionage.
In fact, we applaud the nomination of qualified individuals of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds to serve in President-Elect Obama’s administration. Two days after a March 6, 1999 New York Times article detailing possible theft of nuclear warhead information at the national weapons labs, Richardson publicly terminated Dr.
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Click here for the PDF English version of the letter (annotated w/ footnotes).