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Tag: Attorney General

Jeff Sessions’ Appointment As Attorney General Would Make Immigration a Top Priority

Jeff Sessions

Jeff Sessions

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Sen. Jeff Sessions was one of Congress’ leading crusaders for cracking down on illegal immigration and increasing mass deportations – positions he could turn into a reality as attorney general.

If President-elect Donald Trump officially choose Sessions to lead the Justice Department, immigration could be the top priority of his administration, the Associated Press reports. 

The AP writes:

As the nation’s top law enforcement official, Sessions could execute maneuvers to limit which nationalities the U.S. would accept as refugees and to reverse a federal policy that protects young people from deportation.

“The president has the clear power to suspend immigration to protect America,” Sessions said during the Republican convention when he was discussing the threat of terrorism and the need to scrutinize refugees more closely.

The fourth-term Republican from Alabama was the first senator to support Trump’s candidacy, and he helped shape Trump’s positions on immigration. Sessions favors limiting the number of refugees coming into the U.S. and turning away children who arrive at the border alone who are attempting to reunite with families living in the U.S.

NYT: Appointing Jeff Sessions As Attorney General Is an Insult to Justice

Jeff Sessions

Jeff Sessions

By Editorial Board
New York Times

In 1986, President Ronald Reagan nominated Jeff Sessions, then a United States attorney from Alabama, to be a federal judge. The Republican-controlled Senate rejected Mr. Sessions out of concern, based on devastating testimony by former colleagues, that he was a racist.

Three decades later, Mr. Sessions, now a veteran Alabama senator, is on the verge of becoming the nation’s top law-enforcement official, after President-elect Donald Trump tapped him on Friday to be attorney general.

It would be nice to report that Mr. Sessions, who is now 69, has conscientiously worked to dispel the shadows that cost him the judgeship. Instead, the years since his last confirmation hearing reveal a pattern of dogged animus to civil rights and the progress of black Americans and immigrants.

Based on his record, we can form a fairly clear picture of what his Justice Department would look like:

For starters, forget about aggressive protection of civil rights, and of voting rights in particular. Mr. Sessions has called the Voting Rights Act of 1965 a “piece of intrusive legislation.” Under him, the department would most likely focus less on prosecutions of minority voter suppression and more on rooting out voter fraud, that hallowed conservative myth. As a federal prosecutor, Mr. Sessions brought voter-fraud charges against three civil rights workers trying to register black voters in rural Alabama. The prosecution turned up 14 allegedly doctored ballots out of 1.7 million cast, and the jury voted to acquit.

Forget, also, any federal criminal-justice reform, which was on the cusp of passage in Congress before Mr. Trump’s “law and order” campaign. Mr. Sessions strongly opposed bipartisan legislation to scale back the outrageously harsh sentences that filled federal prisons with low-level drug offenders. Instead, he called for more mandatory-minimum sentences and harsher punishments for drug crimes.

To read more click here. 

Trump Selects Controversial Sen. Jeff Sessions for Attorney General

Jeff Sessions

Jeff Sessions

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President-elect Donald Trump’s choice for attorney general is Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, a controversial pick because of his staunchly conservative positions on immigration, gay rights and Muslims.

The 69-year-old, four-term Alabama Republican also has a history of making racist statements, which kept him from getting a judgeship under President Reagan in 1986.

Sessions, for example, said the NAACP and other organizations are “communist inspired” and “un-American organizations with anti-traditional American values,” the New York Times reported at the time.

During a committee hearing in 1986, Thomas Figures, a black assistant U.S. attorney who worked for Sessions, testified that the Alabama Republican said he thought KKK members were “OK, until he learned that they smoked marijuana.”

Sessions also has argued that immigrants don’t have constitutional protections and that prison sentencing shouldn’t be overhauled for drug convictions.

When Trump proposed a complete shutdown on Muslims entering the U.S., Sessions defended the idea.

Asked whether he would serve in Trump’s administration Thursday, Sessions said he’d be “honored.”

Rudy Giuliani: Probably Nobody ‘Knows Justice Department Better Than Me’

Rudolph Giuliani

Rudolph Giuliani

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Rudy Giuliani sounded a lot like President-elect Donald Trump on Thursday when he spoke of his qualifications to head the Justice Department.

“There’s probably nobody that knows the Justice Department better than me,” the former New York mayor said, adding that “I certainly have the energy” to take on the task of attorney general, USA Today reports

He added: “I know the bottom of the Justice Department, and I know the top of the Justice Department.”

It’s unclear whether Giuliani will be tapped for the job.

In the meantime, some members of Trump’s transition team appeared to suggest that the new administration won’t try to prosecute Hillary Clinton.

Janet Reno, First Woman to Serve As Attorney General, Died at 78

Former Attorney General Janet Reno.

Former Attorney General Janet Reno.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The United States’ first woman to serve as attorney general, Janet Reno, died early Monday at age 78.

Reno spent her final day at home in Miami before succumbing to complications from Parkinson’s disease. She was surrounded by family and friends, NPR reports. 

“She was the least air-brushed candidate we have ever had for a cabinet-level position,” said Jamie Gorelick, who would later become deputy attorney general. “She was herself and she didn’t change herself for Washington.”

NPR wrote:

Reno served longer in the job than anyone had in 150 years. And her tenure was marked by tragedy and controversy. But she left office widely respected for her independence and accomplishments.

She was not President Bill Clinton’s first choice to head the Justice Department, nor his second. But after his number-one pick went down in confirmation flames, and his second choice also proved controversial, Clinton finally turned to Reno.

She was an unexpected pick. She had no connections to Clinton or Washington. But Clinton wanted a woman, and Reno was a big-time prosecutor, holding the top prosecutor’s job in Miami-Dade County, a position she had been elected to four times over 15 years.

Group Sues for Access to Information Related to Bill Clinton’s Meeting with AG Lynch

Attorney General Loretta Lynch

Attorney General Loretta Lynch

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A lot of questions have been raised about the meeting between Bill Clinton and Attorney General Loretta Lynch.

To find out more about the June meeting, the American Center for Law and Justice filed a federal lawsuit Wednesday for access to more information, CBN News reports. 

The meeting happened just days before FBI Director James Comey opted not to recommend criminal charges against Hillary Clinton.

“The arrogance and inappropriate actions of the Obama administration cannot go unchallenged and that is why we have gone to federal court today and filed this critical lawsuit,” Jay Sekulow, chief counsel of the ACLJ, said. “This administration has gone out of its way to hide information from the American public — information that is extremely troubling.”

“The stakes are high,” he continued. “The American people deserve a Justice Department with integrity. We must demand accountability for corruption. If we don’t, a constitutional crisis is imminent. The corruption must have consequences.”

Justice Department to Award More Than $20M for Body Cameras for Police

Body cams, via Wikipedia

Body cams, via Wikipedia

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

After the rash of police shootings of black men across country, the Justice Department plans to award more than $20 million to law enforcement agencies to use or enhance body cameras.   

Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Monday, saying the money will be awarded to 106 state, city, tribal and municipal law enforcement agencies, the Chicago Tribune reports. 

“Of course, even as we strive to support local leaders and our law enforcement partners in their work to protect their communities, we are mindful — we know, we see every day — that effective public safety requires more than arrests and prosecutions,” Lynch said. “Because It also requires winning, and keeping, the trust and the confidence of the citizens we serve.”

Lynch alluded to the police shootings to raise the importance of body cameras footage.

“There is no doubt that these are challenging times for law enforcement and communities alike,” Lynch said. “Where the relationship of trust has frayed and frankly broken, we see the mistrust within the community; we also see the underlying fear within many of our friends and neighbors that when they are threatened by violence, they will have no one to call.”

More Than 110 People Charged with ISIS-Linked Crimes in U.S. Since Late 2013

ISIS flag

ISIS flag

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Since late 2013, more than 110 people have been charged in federal court with crimes related to ISIS, U.S. Assistant Attorney General John Carlin said Monday.

Carlin urged Americans to alert federal authorities when they witness a supporter of terrorist organizations, Reuters reports. 

He said people in the community have told authorities in more than 80% of the ISIS cases that they believed the suspect had been involved in crimes for which they were charged. But in more than half of those cases, the public failed to report the activity until after charges were filed.

Last year, 60 people with links to ISIS were charged.

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