February 01, 2017

Kaine To Oppose Jeff Sessions For Attorney General

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement today on the nomination of Senator Jeff Sessions to be Attorney General:

“I was a civil rights lawyer for 17 years and know that one of the most important roles of the Justice Department is to protect civil rights. This calls for an Attorney General whose commitment to marginalized communities is strong in both word and deed. Unfortunately, Senator Sessions has a long, public record that reflects the opposite. He has called the Voting Rights Act ‘intrusive’ and has demonstrated a poor commitment to desegregating schools in his home state of Alabama. At a time when there is a dire need for improved relationships between law enforcement and the communities they serve, I do not feel that someone with Senator Sessions’s history on these issues would play a constructive role in safeguarding civil rights and improving race relations as head of the Justice Department.

“In addition, I have concerns about Senator Sessions’s support for the extreme interrogation techniques used during the Bush Administration. Senator Sessions’s statements about waterboarding and his votes against prohibiting the use of torture do not convince me that a Justice Department under his leadership would uphold American values regarding the decent and humane treatment of detainees.

“While I respect Senator Sessions as a colleague and have had the pleasure to work alongside him on the Armed Services Committee, I will oppose his nomination to be Attorney General.”

In addition to Sessions, Kaine has announced his opposition to the following Trump nominees: Rex Tillerson, Tom Price, Betsy DeVos, Ben Carson and Mick Mulvaney. He has voted in support of the following Trump nominees: James Mattis, John Kelly, Mike Pompeo, Nikki Haley and Elaine Chao. Additional decisions are forthcoming based on ongoing review of the nominees’ backgrounds and confirmation hearings.  

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