Sen. Jeff Sessions confirmed as U.S. Attorney General

Politics
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WASHINGTON — The Senate has confirmed Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions to be attorney general in the Trump administration.

The 52-47 vote broke largely along party lines and capped weeks of divisive battles over Sessions, an early supporter of Donald Trump and one of the Senate’s most conservative Republicans.

Shortly after the vote, reaction from many Alabama lawmakers poured in.

Congressman Mo Brooks issued this statement praising the confirmation of Sessions

“Although this confirmation should have come sooner, I am pleased the Senate today confirmed Jeff Sessions as the United States Attorney General under President Donald Trump.  I look forward to his strict enforcement of our immigration laws, support for local law enforcement officers, protection of our Second Amendment rights, and adherence to the rule of law.  I appreciate Jeff Sessions’ willingness to serve and have every confidence he will faithfully defend the Constitution and protect the rights of all Americans.

Alabama Senator Richard Shelby also offered praise to Sessions as well as thanking him for his service to the state.

“It is great news for the American people and the rule of law that Jeff Sessions was confirmed to be the Attorney General of the United States.  He has served the people of Alabama with honor, which is undoubtedly how he will approach the job as our nation’s chief law enforcement officer.

“While I will miss partnering with Jeff in the Senate on behalf of our great state, our work together will not come to a close tonight.  I join my fellow Alabamians and Senate colleagues in congratulating Attorney General Sessions, and I look forward to working with him in his new role.”


Alabama Republican Party Chairman Terry Lathan issued a statement regarding Jeff Sessions’ confirmation.

“The Alabama Republican Party offers our highest congratulations to Jeff Sessions as he begins this new role as United States Attorney General. Jeff Sessions has served our state well over the last forty plus years. We could not be more thankful for his leadership and commitment to Alabama and our nation.”

“America will be safer and stronger with Jeff Sessions applying and following the laws of this nation as U.S. Attorney General. President Trump’s confidence and acknowledgement of Jeff Sessions is well placed.

“We will miss Jeff Sessions as our Alabama Senator but look forward to the great accomplishments he will make as U.S. Attorney General.”

Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange also issued a statement congratulating Sessions

“Today, I join with the people of Alabama in offering our congratulations to Jeff Sessions on his confirmation as our United States Attorney General. Now the whole country will have the privilege of knowing the fine man that Alabamians have long come to admire and revere,” said Attorney General Strange.

“As Alabama’s Attorney General, I am particularly grateful for the reprieve from federal overreach that states will surely be granted under Attorney General Sessions. Throughout my six years in this office, I have wrestled with the Justice Department on an endless number of oppressive federal policies stemming from a total lack of constitutional deference and respect for the states. I am confident that Jeff Sessions will do his part to restore the delicate balance between the states and the federal government that the Founders envisioned.

“Jeff Sessions will enforce our nation’s laws with impartiality and unwavering fidelity to the Constitution. He will support and reinvigorate our law enforcement officers. As demonstrated throughout his 20 years of service in the Senate, he will never sacrifice principle for popularity.”

Luther Strange is one of six finalists Governor Robert Bentley named to fill the senate seat now vacated by Sessions.

Sen. Jeff Sessions (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Sen. Jeff Sessions (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The fight over Sessions nomination spurred some of the most jarring, and at times personal attacks, rooted in allegations that Sessions was a racist — claims the Alabama senator and his supporters have fiercely denied. Even early in the nomination process, one of Sessions’ colleagues, Cory Booker, became the first sitting senator to testify against another sitting senator during his confirmation hearing.

Shortly before the vote, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell took to the Senate floor to sing the praises of Sessions, after Democrats spent hours criticizing him.

“He’s just a likable guy, one of the most humble and most considerate people you’ll ever meet,” McConnell said. “He’s a true Southern gentleman.”

In the debate Tuesday evening, after Republicans already blocked a Senate filibuster, Warren reignited that debate by reading from a 1986 letter Coretta Scott King sent opposing Sessions for a federal judgeship.

“‘Anyone who has used the power of his office as United States Attorney to intimidate and chill the free exercise of the ballot by citizens should not be elevated to our courts,'” Warren read from King’s letter. McConnell accused Warren of impugning Sessions on the Senate floor — a violation of Senate rules — and after a series of procedural votes, she was forced to sit down and stop debating.

Warren’s censure and subsequent reaction continued to largely overshadow the Sessions fight in the hours before his vote, but the Massachusetts Democrat told CNN’s Manu Raju said Sessions, whom she served with in the chamber, is just the latest example of a poor Cabinet choice.

“We may not have the votes to stop him,” she said, “but we sure as hell need to make it clear to the Republicans and to the American people exactly who Donald Trump is putting in charge of our government.”

Sessions was ultimately blocked from a federal judgeship and carried that battle scar into Wednesday’s final confirmation battle.

The Alabama Republican Party chairman praised the vote confirming Sessions to be the next U.S. attorney general

Her statement said:

“The Alabama Republican Party offers our highest congratulations to Jeff Sessions as he begins this new role as United States Attorney General. Jeff Sessions has served our state well over the last forty plus years. We could not be more thankful for his leadership and commitment to Alabama and our nation.”

“America will be safer and stronger with Jeff Sessions applying and following the laws of this nation as U.S. Attorney General. President Trump’s confidence and acknowledgement of Jeff Sessions is well placed.

“We will miss Jeff Sessions as our Alabama Senator but look forward to the great accomplishments he will make as U.S. Attorney General.”

The NRA released a statement following Wednesday evening’s vote

“The NRA and our five million members would like to congratulate Jeff Sessions on his confirmation as attorney general. He will make America a safer place by prosecuting violent criminals while protecting the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding gun owners.”

 

 

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