Five years after failing to be heard as a Supreme Court candidate, Republican senators have generally been sympathetic to President Biden's candidate for attorney general, Merrick Garland.
"I love you, I respect you, and I think you're good for the job," Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, told a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Monday morning. Grassley is the top Republican on the committee.
“I think you’re very good at this job,” said Sen. Lindsay Graham, R-SC, who previously served as chair of the judiciary.
Garland was appointed to the Federal Appeal Bank by then-President Bill Clinton in 1997 and was nominated to the Supreme Court in 2016 by then-President Barack Obama. Senate Republicans, including Grassley and Graham, blocked a public hearing on his nomination and eventually allowed President Donald Trump to fill the seat with Conservative Justice Neil Gorsuch.
Graham also opposed the confirmation hearing before being appointed as Garland's attorney general.
Outside witnesses will testify about Garland on Tuesday with a March 1 committee vote. During Monday's hearing, he reiterated that he would be an independent attorney general who served the American people and said, "I am not a lawyer for the president, I am an advocate for the United States."
"You will confirm. I will encourage my farm in Vermont to do this," said Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Witt, after his interrogation.
"You should never tell anyone to bet," Ganland replied with a laugh.
The Republican Senate has generally been reluctant to fight with Malala. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz praised Obama as a moderate voice before listing complaints about the Justice Department. Ben Sasse of Nebraska asked about Garland's views on Jeffrey Epstein's investigation into sex trafficking. Marsha Blackburn, Tennessee, said she wanted to make sure the president's son, Hunter Biden, did not have to worry about tax evasion.
After the definition of racial prejudice "Sen. John Kennedy, R-La." "You're a good lawyer," said Sen. John F. Kennedy.
There were some exceptions. White nominee Mike Lee urged Garland to ask questions when nominating Vanita Gupta and Kristen Clarke to the top post in the Justice Department. Garland was fully throated in his defense of the ability of two women.
Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) questioned Attorney General-designate Merrick Garland during a confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on February 22, 2021, at the Hart Senate office building in Washington, D.C. (Drew Anger / Getty Images)
Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, questions Garland during the hearing. (Drew Anger / Getty Images)
The issue raised by many Republicans ensured that Special Adviser John Durham could continue his investigation into the origins of the FBI's investigation into the Trump campaign with Russia. Garland said he saw "no reason" to end Durham but said he needed more information before promising a blanket.
"I should have the opportunity to talk to him. "I haven't had that opportunity," Garland asked Grassley, who said he had removed Durham only "for a reason." "I said, I know now there's no reason - which is really very little - to make any decision on that land," he said. But I have no reason to think that I am not with him. ”
Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark, pressured Garland with his views on the death penalty and asked him if he regretted the death sentence handed down to Timothy McVeigh following the 1995 1995 bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City. A top federal lawyer in the case said he did not.
He said those sentenced to death who were later expelled had given a "big break" about the process.
"The most frightening incident happens when someone is sentenced to death without committing a crime," he said.
Sen. Josh Howley, R-Mo, asked Garland about refuting the police. Garland said the Biden administration's policy also states that more money should be spent on programs for both police and mental health and drug counseling. He cited bodycam footage played during the trial of Trump's impeachment of the Capital Rebellion in January, citing police difficulties. Holly Biden was one of the main Republican opponents who came to the Capitol on January 6 to stop pro-Trump riots.
U.S. Army Sen. Josh Howley (R-Mo) speaks at a Senate Judiciary Committee meeting on Capitol Hill in Washington DC on February 22, 2020. (Demetrius Freeman-Pool / Getty Images)
Sen. Josh Holly, R-Mo, speaks at the hearing. (Demetrius Freeman-Pool / Getty Images)
At the start of the hearing, Garland promised to carry out a thorough investigation into Dotga and his accomplices. "We're facing a more dangerous period in Oklahoma City than we did then," he said.
“We start with the people on the ground and work our way up to those involved. And we take the lead wherever we take them, "Garland said of the investigation into the January attack, adding:" It was the most heinous attack on the democratic process I have ever seen. "
Sen. Corey Booker, D-N.J, asked the nominee about his motivation for service.
"I come from a family where my grandparents ran away from Semitism and persecution," Garland shouted. "The country has taken us and our security is gone. I feel obligated to pay back to the country, and this is the highest, best use of my skill set for return. ”
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