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Tag: confirmation

Washington Post: Senate Should Confirm Trump’s Nominee for No. 2 Spot at DOJ

rod_rosenstein_us_attorneyBy Editorial Board
Washington Post

Though President Donald Trump’s opening weeks have been chaotic and dispiriting, the nation’s new chief executive has still managed to make a few good choices. One of his best was nominating Rod Rosenstein to be the No. 2 at the Justice Department. The sooner the Senate confirms him, the sooner the administration will have another adult in its top ranks. So it’s unfortunate that Mr. Rosenstein faced demands from Democrats at his Tuesday confirmation hearing that no one in his position should accede to.

As deputy attorney general, Mr. Rosenstein would oversee the daily operations of a vast, 115,000-person bureaucracy responsible for enforcing laws on everything from hate crimes to antitrust. After nearly three decades in the Justice Department, serving under presidents of both parties, “Rod Rosenstein has demonstrated throughout his long career the highest standards of professionalism,” Sen. Benjamin Cardin, D-Md., testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee. The senator praised Mr. Rosenstein’s “nonpartisan” approach and noted his wide support among Democratic officials in Maryland, where Mr. Rosenstein serves as U.S. attorney and has had notable success prosecuting gang crime and political corruption.

Instead of that record, Mr. Rosenstein’s hearing was dominated by the recusal of Attorney General Jeff Sessions last week from issues involving Russia and the 2016 presidential election. With Mr. Sessions sidelined, Justice Department decisions regarding any investigation into Russia’s meddling and contacts between Mr. Trump’s circle and Russian officials would fall to Mr. Rosenstein.

He assured senators that “political affiliation is irrelevant to my work” and promised to “support any properly predicated investigation related to interference by the Russians or by anybody else in American elections.”

To read more click here. 

Sen. Warren Pledges to Continue Fight Against Appointment of Sessions As AG

Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Senate narrowly confirmed Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Mass., as attorney general, but Democrats are not done fighting.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., pledged to fight the appointment, saying “this is just the beginning” of opposition from Democrats, the Washington Post reports. 

Warren, a potential 2020 presidential candidate, said she fears Sessions will bring “his racism, sexism & bigotry” to the Justice Department.

Trump’s Pick for Homeland Security Secretary to Make Case for Confirmation

Marine Gen. John Kelly

Marine Gen. John Kelly

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Donald Trump’s pick for Homeland Security secretary pledged to commit to diversity and tolerance if confirmed during a Senate hearing beginning Tuesday.

Retired Marine Gen. John Kelly is likely to be grilled about his positions following President-elect Donald Trump’s divisive, controversial statements about immigrants, Mexicans and Muslims.

Kelly will testify before the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee.

“I believe in America and the principles upon which our country and way of life are guaranteed. I believe in respect, tolerance, and diversity of opinion. I have a profound respect for the rule of law and will always strive to uphold it,” Kelly plans to tell the panel, Politico reports. “I have never had a problem speaking truth to power, and I firmly believe that those in power deserve full candor and my honest assessment and recommendations.”

Kelly plans to you his military experience and roll as a military adviser.

Other Stories of Interest

Obama’s Nominee to Lead TSA Gets Advances After Senate Committee Approval

Peter Neffenger via YouTube

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President Obama’s nominee to lead the TSA was approved by a Senate committee following the enforcement of the Commerce Committee less than two week earlier, Bloomberg reports.

The Senate Homeland Security Committee approved Coast Guard Vice Admiral Peter Neffenger on a voice vote.

The nomination comes at a strenuous period for the TSA, which recently was exposed for failing to spot weapons and other banned items in a vast majority of the test cases. The agency also has come under criticism for purchasing decisions, hiring practices and aggressive pat-downs.

If approved, Neffenger would replace former acting TSA Administrator Melvin Carraway.

 Other Stories of Interest


Top-Level Vacancies in Justice Department Are Significant Challenge, Opportunity for President Obama

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President Obama is faced with a significant challenge and opportunity.

The top three jobs at the Justice Department will soon be vacant, and just four of Obama’s 11 choices for assistant attorney generals have been confirmed, CBS News reports.

The vacancies leave a power vacuum at an agency that has been very active in law enforcement issues.

“It’s always a challenge because the senior-level positions require Senate confirmation, and it can be difficult to move these nominees through a confirmation vote,” Thomas Dupree, who served as deputy assistant attorney general during the George W. Bush administration, told CBS News. At the same time, he said, “It’s an opportunity for [the president] to identify new people who will bring new energy and new ideas into the administration.”

The vacancies also offer a good opportunity for the administration “to look at the whole matrix” of skills and experience that fit the needs of the country, said Robert Raben, an assistant attorney general in the Clinton administration.

Contentious Senate Hearings Expected When Obama Names Replacement for AG Holder

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Whoever is going to succeed Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. is likely to face a contentious Senate, the Washington Post reports.

Some Republicans even called for a delay because of the potential of midterm elections swinging in favor of the GOP in November.

“Allowing Democratic senators, many of whom will likely have just been defeated at the polls, to confirm Holder’s successor would be an abuse of power that should not be countenanced,” Sen. Ted Cruz said.

Democrats urged Republicans to let Obama make his selection without the drama.

“This is going to be the first real test, whether it’s in the lame-duck or early in the new year, whether our Republican colleagues are going to continue to obstruct,” Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Thursday in an interview. “Every president deserves to have his attorney general.”

Obama has yet to indicate when he will replace Holder.

Homeland Security Nominee Jeh Johnson on Smooth Track to Confirmation – So Far

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

If Wednesday was any indication, President Obama’s choice for Department of Homeland Security may have a remarkably smooth nomination process.

The Los Angeles Times reports that a Senate committee swiftly supported the appointment of Jeh Johnson, who gained fans among Republicans while the Pentagon’s chief counsel.

The committee support means Johnson must now gain full Senate approval.

The job won’t be easy if Johnson gets it. The agency has long been accused of mismanagement and waste.

FBI Admits Using Drones 10 Times for Surveillance on U.S. Soil

istock photo

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI has acknowledged using surveillance drones on U.S. soil at least 10 times, Al Jazeera America reports.

The admission comes after Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., made inquiries after FBI Director Robert Mueller told Congress in June that the bureau had used drones for “limited law enforcement purposes.”

According to the disclosure, the FBI used drones domestically eight times for criminal cases and twice for “national security cases,” Al Jazeera America wrote.

Paul had vowed to block the confirmation of a new FBI director until details of the drone use became available.

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