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NAACP sounds alarm on ‘decline’ in civil rights commitment

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WASHINGTON (AP) _ Leaders of the nation’s oldest civil rights organization are set to meet with Attorney General Jeff Sessions, saying his policy changes “signal a threatening decline” in the Justice Department’s commitment to civil rights.

The NAACP’s Friday meeting comes after Sessions suggested the agency would pursue fewer federal investigations of troubled police departments. The Justice Department this week also abandoned an Obama-era challenge to a key aspect of Texas’ voter ID law that is among the toughest in the nation.

NAACP President Cornell William Brooks says those changes are troubling. He says they “imply a disturbing departure” from the Justice Department’s enforcement of civil rights laws.

Sessions said this week that too much federal scrutiny on police departments could cause police to be less effective and crime to rise.