The news of Jeff Sessions being President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for Attorney General came with criticism and detractors. This culminated in yesterday’s hearing, which saw protestors interrupting. Today, New Jersey Senator Corey Booker (D) made history by being the first sitting senator to testify against another sitting senator at a confirmation hearing for a Presidential cabinet position. Sessions being a person that Booker felt “honored” to work with before.
— Sen. Cory Booker (@SenBookerOffice) January 11, 2017
Georgia Representative John Lewis and Congressional Black Caucus Chairman Representative Cedric Richmond joined Booker in delivering testimonies against Senator Jeff Session’s civil rights record.
Senator Booker said that “The arc of the moral universe does not just naturally curve toward justice, we must bend it. America needs an attorney general who is resolute and determined to bend the arc. Sen. Sessions record does not speak to that desire, intention or will.”
Still, the Republicans on the committee that was holding the hearing unanimously responded by defending Sessions as a fair enforcer of the law.
William Smith, a former staffer on the Judiciary committee, also spoke highly of Sessions by saying “Members of this committee know Sen. Sessions … is fair and honest. After 20 years of knowing Sen. Sessions, I have not seen the slightest evidence of racism because it does not exist. I know a racist when I see one, and I have seen more than one. Sen. Sessions is not one.”
In addition, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, who spent some time today sparring with Trump’s Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson, also lent his support for Sessions as Attorney General. He explained in a statement that “Serving with Jeff Sessions over the past six years, I’ve seen him work relentlessly to uphold the rule of law against the abuses of the Obama Administration, particularly at the Department of Justice. Jeff is a formidable lawyer with an intense passion for defending the Constitution – two of the many qualities that will serve him well as attorney general of the United States.”
He also added that “Jeff understands the threats our nation faces, including radical Islamic terrorists within our borders and illicit drugs destroying our communities. I am confident he will make protecting our neighborhoods a top priority. For these reasons, I will support his nomination.”
Before opposing him as Attorney General, Corey Booker felt “honored” to work with Senator Sessions on Civil Rights issues: