The federal judge will take over a Department of Justice that was ill-treated during the Trump administration and faces the threat of domestic extremism

WASHINGTON – The Senate voted in favor of Merrick B’s confirmation Garland will serve as attorney general on Wednesday, entrusting the former prosecutor and widely recognized federal judge to lead the Justice Department at a time when the nation faces extremist domestic threats and civil rights reckoning

Mr Garland was confirmed at 70-30 by the Senators, with 20 Republicans joining all 50 Democrats in support of him. He is expected to be sworn in at the Justice Department on Thursday

“Attorney General Garland will run the Justice Department with honesty and integrity,” said Senator Richard J Durbin, Democrat of Illinois and chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said in a statement, “He has a great job ahead of him, but I can’t think of anyone I’d rather have in his place.”

Judge Garland has vowed to restore public confidence in a department embroiled in political controversy under former President Donald J Trump, who sought both to undermine federal law enforcement and to scrutinize him and his staff took as well as used his power to help him personally and politically

At his confirmation hearing, Judge Garland, 68, said that becoming an attorney general would be “the high point of a career in making sure our country’s laws are fairly and faithfully enforced and the rights of all Americans are protected.” ”

Judge Garland has gathered decades of legal credentials. He was an employee of the Supreme Court William J Brennan Jr.worked as a federal attorney for years and directed extensive investigations into the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing and others before being ruled in the District of Columbia Court of Appeals in 1997

He was elected to the Supreme Court by President Barack Obama in 2016, only to maintain his nomination for eight months in a bold political maneuver by Senator Mitch McConnell, Republican of Kentucky and then majority leader at the time, the move allowed Mr Trump to elect his own candidate to occupy the seat

But Mr. McConnell, who said he would support Judge Garland as attorney general last year, was among Republicans who voted for his endorsement and closed the debate on his nomination the day before to pave the way for a full Senate vote >

“I am voting to sustained Judge Garland for his long history as a straight shooter and legal expert,” said Mr McConnell said in the Senate before casting his vote

Mr McConnell said he hoped Judge Garland would use his “no-nonsense approach” to face the challenges facing the Justice Department and the nation, and that he would keep the Department on a centrist path
Department staff have said that Mr. Garland’s performance in his verification hearing, a largely consensual matter, made them hopeful that he would return the agency’s honor and make their 115000 employees demoralized by the Trump-era rancor

Restoring confidence inside and outside the Justice Department will be vital as Judge Garland will immediately oversee the politically charged investigation, including a federal fraud investigation against President Biden’s son Hunter and a special lawyer investigation into the investigation against Russia

The department will also be involved in civil and criminal cases related to issues that have bitterly divided the country, including systemic racism, policing, regulation of large tech companies, LGBTQ Rights and other civil liberties are important

Judge Garland will also grapple with the emergence of domestic extremism as law enforcement officials continue to investigate the January 6 attack on the Capitol His first briefings this week should be with the FBi director Christopher A Wray to discuss the threat and speak to Michael R Sherwin, the top outgoing Washington prosecutor who led the Justice Department investigation

The Capitol riot investigation has brought Roger J closer to Stone Jr, one of Mr. Trump’s allies and the FB.I found evidence of communication between right-wing extremists and White House staff, underscoring how closely Mr Trump had been affiliated with such groups during his presidency

During his confirmation hearing, Judge Garland said that he would use his experience leading the Department’s investigation into the Oklahoma City bombing to help combat domestic extremism again

“I have been overseeing the persecution of those who committed the bombing of the Oklahoma City federal building in an attempt to spark a revolution that would overthrow the federal government,” he said Stormed the Capitol on January 1st, a hideous attack that was supposed to disrupt a cornerstone of our democracy, the peaceful transfer of power to a newly elected government ”


Republicans who voted against Judge Garland, including Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton, said they feared his reputation as a fair judge wouldn’t stop him from adopting a “radical agenda” as attorney general

During the Clinton administration, Judge Garland was selected as its chief deputy by Jamie Gorelick, assistant attorney general, who led and oversaw the investigation into the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing that resulted in the conviction and execution of Timothy McVeigh high profile cases, including the unabomber Theodore J Kaczynski and the bombings at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta
The investigation helped cement Judge Garland’s reputation as a fair centrist.He didn’t make big headlines again until 2016 when Mr. Obama nominated him to the Supreme Court, a decision supported by both parties after his appeals court was confirmed has been, even by conservative stalwarts like former Whitewater prosecutor Ken Starr

But Mr. McConnell refused to consider his nomination, and Mr. Trump nominated Neil Gorsuch to fill the vacant seat in 2017.Justice Garland stayed on the appeals court

Merrick Garland

World News – US – Merrick Garland reassigned as Attorney General

Source: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/10/us/politics/merrick-garland-attorney-general-confirmation.html