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A project tracking federal judicial nominations and courts.

Senator Statements


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Prepared Statement, Sen. Grassley, Chairman, Judiciary Committee on Sessions Attorney General nomination
(Republican - Iowa) 01/24/17
"I look forward to reporting his nomination out of Committee next week. There will be plenty of time to debate his nomination next week. I just wanted to note that we held a full and fair hearing for Senator Sessions two weeks ago. The first day of our hearing lasted from 9:30 in the morning until nearly 8:00 at night so that everyone had ample time to ask questions. I appreciate everyone’s cooperation. We allowed more time for Members to submit questions for the record than the Committee did for Attorney General Holder. Members submitted those questions and we’ve received Senator Sessions’ answers."

Sen. Daines: Sessions Will Uphold Rule of Law as AG
(Republican - Montana) 01/12/17
Senator Steve Daines today released the following statement after meeting with President-elect Donald J. Trump’s designee for the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions. “I know Jeff Sessions to be a kind-hearted man that stays true to his word and honors the commitment to the rule of law,” Daines stated. “In his new role as Attorney General, I have confidence that he will faithfully defend the Constitution and enforce the law – principles that were too often lacking during the Obama administration.”

Sen. Rubio Announces Support for Jeff Sessions as Next Attorney General
(Republican - Florida) 01/11/17
"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. 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.”

Sen. Cotton Meets with Attorney General Nominee Jeff Sessions
(Republican - Arkansas) 01/03/17
Senator Tom Cotton (R- Arkansas) today released the following statement after meeting with Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions: "Jeff Sessions is one of the most qualified nominees for Attorney General in history and will be an exemplary leader at the Justice Department. I have come to know Jeff well in our time in the Senate, and I have seen his integrity up close. He will be a steadfast defender of the Constitution and the rule of law. And he is committed to securing our borders and fixing our broken immigration system. I look forward to supporting his nomination."

Sen. Cornyn Floor Statement: Working Together [Sessions nomination]
(Republican - Texas) 01/03/17
"I have already spoken about one of our colleagues, Senator Sessions, the President-elect's nominee to be the chief law enforcement officer for the country. I think Senator Sessions is an excellent choice. Our colleagues will have a chance to ask all the questions they want, but there is one thing I can be sure of with Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions, and that is that he will remove the political orientation of the Department of Justice and make sure that it is not just another political branch of the White House. I look forward to confirming him as Attorney General, and I am confident that he will be prepared to answer the questions from our colleagues."

Sen. Tim Scott, AG nominee Jeff Sessions meet in Charleston
(Republican - South Carolina) 12/15/16
Sen. Scott said he invited Sessions down to show him how the Charleston area has deftly dealt with crime and tragedy over the past two years — and how it handles diversity. "Before I vote for him to be our attorney general, I want to know what's in his heart," Scott says, "not what he allegedly said back in 1986."... But Scott said he was not auditioning Sessions, he was just doing his homework.... Scott says this is one of the most important votes he will take, and he won't take it lightly. And he still has not decided whether to support Sessions for attorney general. "I have to feel confident the attorney general is going to do the right thing in all cases," Scott says. "This has more impact on our state, the rule of law and disenfranchised communities than any other Cabinet-level position. I just want to be open-minded and do my homework." ... Scott said Thursday evening that Sessions "did a good job today."

Sen. Grassley: Sessions Hearing on Track
(Republican - Iowa) 12/14/16
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley today said that the hearing for Attorney General nominee Senator Jeff Sessions is on track after returning the committee questionnaire last week. Grassley noted that Attorney General Eric Holder supplemented his questionnaire with hundreds of additional items in 2008, 2009 and even in 2010, and his hearing remained on schedule on the timeline the committee will follow for Sessions. Grassley added that Sessions’ more than 20 years in public service, along with the fact that members of the committee have worked next to him on issues such as sentencing reform, civil rights, and victims of crime make the committee more than equipped to hold the hearing consistent with the timeline set for Attorney General Holder. Here [LINK] is Grassley’s letter to Feinstein.

Sen. Grassley Statement on Sessions Nomination to be Attorney General
(Republican - Iowa) 12/13/16
“The materials provided to the committee by Senator Sessions are in large part public documents that anyone can find on his official Senate website. It’s information that’s been publicly available, in some instances, for twenty years. In fact, only a small percentage of the material was not already publicly available. As the committee members know, Attorney General Holder supplemented his questionnaire multiple times with, literally, hundreds of additions and clarifications, including one update more than a year after he was confirmed. And, most importantly, his hearing remained on schedule. So, any suggestion that a nominee’s good faith efforts to locate and produce responsive material is cause for delay begins to look like a call for delay for delay’s sake, rather than a thorough review of a colleague’s character and qualifications. I look forward to hearing from Senator Sessions on Jan. 10.”

Sen. Grassley Sets Hearing Date for Attorney General Nominee
(Republican - Iowa) 12/09/16
The Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Chuck Grassley, today announced that the hearing for Attorney General nominee, Senator Jeff Sessions, will be held on January 10-11, 2017. Sessions returned the committee questionnaire today, ... “I appreciate Senator Sessions’ prompt response. We will begin reviewing his questionnaire and going through the documents so we’re ready to hold a fair and thorough hearing on Jan. 10,” Grassley said. “We all know Senator Sessions to be an honorable man who has held public office for more than 20 years. I look forward to hearing from him next month.”

Sen. Grassley Meets with Attorney General Nominee Sessions
(Republican - Iowa) 11/29/16
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley made the following statement: Members of the Judiciary Committee know him to be an honorable man, and a person of integrity. He knows the Justice Department well, and cares deeply about the even-handed application of the law. “The process for Attorney General Holder’s hearing was fair, and a good model to follow. Every nominee to be Attorney General has a long record, and Senator Sessions’ record of public service is just that, public. Unlike most recent nominees for Attorney General, members of the committee are extremely well acquainted with Senator Sessions, after having served with him for up to twenty years. “Democratic members of the committee have pledged a fair process. Based on those commitments, I trust the other side will resist what some liberal interest groups are clearly hoping for – an attack on his character. The confirmation process of John Ashcroft to be Attorney General turned into a reckless campaign that snowballed into an avalanche of innuendo, rumor and spin. That will not happen here. “The hearings for the four most recent Attorneys General lasted one to two days each. And at each of those hearings, three to nine outside witnesses testified. Nine witnesses testified at the hearing for Attorney General Lynch, seven witnesses testified at the hearings for Attorneys General Holder and Mukasey, and three witnesses testified at the hearing for Attorney General Gonzales. “Senator Sessions will receive the fair and thorough vetting process he deserves, as have the last four nominees to be Attorney General.”

(Republican - Texas) 11/28/16
"Our friend, the junior Senator from Alabama, Mr. Sessions, is undoubtedly qualified and prepared for this role as Attorney General because of the long career he spent protecting and defending our Constitution and the rule of law. If there is one thing we can do in the U.S. Government to help restore the public's confidence, it will be to reembrace the concept of equal justice under the law and ensure there is not a double standard by which people are judged--the powerful, the well-connected, and then the rules that apply to everybody else--but, rather, that the same rules apply to all of us.... I think the American people have seen, in the last two Attorneys General--the current one and her predecessor, Mr. Holder--is essentially an office of the Department of Justice that was not worthy of the name ``Justice.'' It should have been called an extension of the White House political operation because so much of the way they conducted themselves was governed not by the rule of law but by political considerations."

Senator David Perdue Statement On Attorney General Nomination
(Republican - Georgia) 11/18/16
“Jeff's extensive legal career and experience make him a natural fit to lead our nation's Justice Department. His knowledge and dedication to our judicial system have been evident during my work with him on the Senate Judiciary Committee. I look forward to continue working with Jeff to make our country safer for all Americans.”

Sen. Wicker Statement on President-elect Trump’s Nomination for Attorney General
(Republican - Mississippi) 11/18/16
“Sen. Sessions will be a champion for the Constitution and the rule of law. He will also provide sound counsel to President-elect Trump during the selection of Supreme Court nominees and other judicial appointments. For the past eight years, the Justice Department has eroded our nation’s immigration laws, attacked our Second Amendment rights, and weakened religious liberty. It has been more concerned with pushing politics than administering the law. If confirmed, I am confident that Sen. Sessions can reverse that tide and help restore people’s faith in their government.”

Sen. Lee Backs Sessions Appointment as Attorney General
(Republican - Utah) 11/18/16
“Sen. Sessions’ solid understanding of the Constitution and firm commitment to the rule of law is exactly what the Justice Department needs. I have worked closely with Sen. Sessions on the Judiciary Committee over these past six years and I have every confidence that he will make a great Attorney General for all Americans."

Sen. Lindsey Graham on President-Elect Trump's Selection for Attorney General
(Republican - South Carolina) 11/18/16
“Senator Sessions is a fine, decent man and principled conservative. I’ve known him for more than twenty years. He has the experience and ability to serve as Attorney General of the United States. He was an early supporter of Donald Trump in the Senate and he has earned the right to serve President-Elect Trump and our nation at the highest level.”

(Republican - Tennessee) 11/18/16
“Jeff Sessions is widely respected in the United States Senate and is a great choice for Attorney General of the United States,” said Corker. “His years of expertise and respect for the rule of law will serve the country well as he assumes this important role in the Trump administration.”

Sen. Cruz Issues Statement on President-Elect Trump’s Choice for Attorney General
(Republican - Texas) 11/18/16
“Sen. Jeff Sessions’ nomination as attorney general is great news for all of us who revere the Constitution and the rule of law. I have been honored to work with Sen. Sessions on many of our nation’s most important issues over the last four years. Sen. Sessions has had an extraordinary career in government and law enforcement. He has been an exemplary senator for the state of Alabama, and I am confident that he will be an exceptional United States attorney general.”

(Republican - Alaska) 11/18/16
“I am encouraged to hear about the nomination of my Senate colleague Senator Jeff Sessions to be the next Attorney General of the United States. Senator Sessions has a long record of exemplary public service, and is a passionate defender of our Constitution and the rule of law. I look forward to his confirmation and working with the next Attorney General in reestablishing constitutional principles that have been eviscerated by the current Administration.”

Sen. Grassley Statement on President-elect Trump Selection of Senator Sessions for Attorney General
(Republican - Iowa) 11/18/16
"Senator Sessions is a respected member and former Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee who has worked across the aisle on major legislation. He knows the Justice Department as a former U.S. attorney, which would serve him very well in this position. With this background, I'm confident he would be reported favorably out of the committee."

Sen. Inhofe Statement on Sen. Sessions for Attorney General
(Republican - Oklahoma) 11/18/16
"I am pleased that President-elect Trump has announced his intention to nominate my good friend and colleague Jeff Sessions as attorney general," Inhofe said. "Sen. Sessions and I have worked closely together in the Senate for the last 20 years on the Armed Services and Environment & Public Works Committees. He is well respected on both sides of the aisle, in his home state of Alabama, and across the country. Sen. Session's experience as well as his deep respect for the rule of law leave no doubt in my mind that he is an excellent pick for attorney general."

Sen. Hatch Statement on Nomination of Senator Jeff Sessions to Serve as Attorney General
(Republican - Utah) 11/18/16
“The Obama Justice Department veered away from its core mission and too often politicized enforcement of the law. Senator Sessions has broad law enforcement experience at both the state and the federal levels, and in both the executive and the legislative branches. I am confident he will help get the Justice Department back on track. Having served with Senator Sessions for many years on the Judiciary Committee, I look forward to supporting his nomination and working closely with him on important initiatives in the months ahead.”

Sen. Toomey: Senator Sessions Will Make a Great Attorney General
(Republican - Pennsylvania) 11/18/16
"Senator Jeff Sessions will make a great Attorney General. The Attorney General has the responsibility to act as an independent public servant who will uphold the law and keep our communities safe. Jeff will do just that. I look forward to the Senate confirmation process for this outstanding nominee. My friend and colleague Jeff Sessions has my full support to be the next U.S. Attorney General."

U.S. Senator Susan Collins' Statement on President-Elect Trump's Nomination for Attorney General
(Republican - Maine) 11/18/16
"Senator Jeff Sessions and I came to the Senate the same year, so I have known him for nearly 20 years. He is an individual who works hard, believes in public service, and acts with integrity. As a former U.S. Attorney and former Alabama Attorney General, Senator Sessions is well qualified and would serve our country well as United States Attorney General."

Majority Leader McConnell’s Statement on Senator Jeff Sessions
(Republican - Kentucky) 11/18/16
“I strongly support the President-elect’s intention to nominate Senator Jeff Sessions to be the next United States Attorney General. Jeff is principled, forthright, and hardworking. He cares deeply about his country and the Department he will be nominated to lead. As a senator, he has worked tirelessly to safeguard the public and to improve the lives of Americans from all walks of life. Whether it was collaborating with our colleague Senator Durbin to reduce sentencing disparities for certain drug offenses, teaming up with the late Senator Ted Kennedy on landmark legislation to combat sexual assault in prison, or his many other achievements, Jeff has always looked out for the safety, security and freedoms of his constituents and the nation. “I look forward to the Senate’s fair and expeditious treatment of our colleague’s forthcoming nomination, just as it promptly processed President Obama’s first Attorney General nomination, which concluded with a timely up or down vote.”

Sen. Shelby Congratulates Senator Jeff Sessions on Cabinet Post Nomination
(Republican - Alabama) 11/18/16
“President-elect Trump has made an outstanding decision in selecting my friend and colleague Senator Jeff Sessions to serve as our next U.S. Attorney General. Jeff is a man of integrity who has been a trusted and valued partner of mine in the Senate as well as an unwavering voice for Alabamians in Congress. With decades of experience in the legal field and an impressive tenure on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Jeff will bring expertise to President-elect Trump’s cabinet and the Department of Justice. I am confident that Jeff will continue to stand up for the American people, our Constitution, and the rule of law in this new role. My wife Annette and I wish him, his wife Mary, and his family the very best during this exciting time.”