Senate Judiciary Committee Concludes Lynch Confirmation Hearing
On January 29, the Senate Judiciary Committee wrapped up its two-day confirmation hearing on U.S. Attorney General Nominee Loretta Lynch. If confirmed, Lynch would make history as the first African-American woman to serve in the position.
Lynch currently serves as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, a post the U.S. Senate unanimously confirmed her to twice. In November, President Obama nominated Lynch to succeed outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder, who announced in September he would step down from the position once the Senate confirmed a successor.
During the hearing’s first day, Lynch pledged to “protect and defend our Constitution, to safeguard our people, and to stand as the leader and public servant that they deserve,” and answered questions on a host of issues, including immigration, voting rights, and criminal justice reform.
After the first day, Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, applauded Lynch’s testimony, saying “Loretta Lynch’s testimony today once again demonstrated the impeccable record, unwavering commitment to public service, and thoughtful consideration of the issues that makes her highly qualified to serve as our next Attorney General.”
A panel of nine witnesses testified on the hearing’s second day. Remarkably, when Ranking Member Patrick Leahy, D. Vt., asked the panel if anyone opposed the nominee, no one raised their hand.
In a letter sent earlier this week to Leahy and Chairman Charles Grassley, R. Iowa, The Leadership Conference urged the committee to swiftly confirm Lynch, writing, “As a strong, fair and independent prosecutor who has served two presidential administrations with distinction, we are confident Ms. Lynch would bring a steady hand to guide the Department of Justice, an agency that is vitally important to the civil and human community because it serves as our nation’s central agency to enforce federal laws.”
The letter applauds Lynch’s tireless commitment to civil and human rights, and praises her work fighting sex trafficking, police brutality, and religious and racial hate crimes.
Lynch’s nomination has received broad, bipartisan support, including support from former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and New York Police Commissioner William Bratton.
To read written testimony and view a recording of the hearing, please click here.