Loretta E. Lynch Addresses the CERD Commitee
A senior multi-agency U.S. delegation presented the most recent U.S. periodic report on the implementation of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD) at the United Nations August 13-14, 2014. Full text of statement by Loretta E. Lynch, U.S. Attorney, Eastern District of New York. https://geneva.usmission.gov/2014/08/13/32482/ U.S. Mission Geneva/ Eric Bridiers

Well, it’s final­ly hap­pened. After many con­temptible delays, the Unit­ed States Sen­ate final­ly took up Loret­ta Lynch’s nom­i­na­tion today and vot­ed to con­firm her as the nation’s next Attor­ney Gen­er­al, which means that incum­bent Eric Hold­er can final­ly pack his bags and leave office, as he has want­ed to do for many months.

A relieved Pres­i­dent Barack Oba­ma hailed the vote.

“Loret­ta has spent her life fight­ing for the fair and equal jus­tice that is the foun­da­tion of our democ­ra­cy,” the Pres­i­dent said in a statement.

“As head of the Jus­tice Depart­ment, she will over­see a vast port­fo­lio of cas­es, includ­ing coun­tert­er­ror­ism and vot­ing rights; pub­lic cor­rup­tion and white-col­lar crime; judi­cial rec­om­men­da­tions and pol­i­cy reviews – all of which mat­ter to the lives of every Amer­i­can, and shape the sto­ry of our country.”

“She will bring to bear her expe­ri­ence as a tough, inde­pen­dent, and well-respect­ed pros­e­cu­tor on key, bipar­ti­san pri­or­i­ties like crim­i­nal jus­tice reform. And she will build on our progress in com­bat­ting new­er threats like cyber­crime. Loretta’s con­fir­ma­tion ensures that we are bet­ter posi­tioned to keep our com­mu­ni­ties safe, keep our nation secure, and ensure that every Amer­i­can expe­ri­ences jus­tice under the law.”

The U.S. Sen­ate’s Demo­c­ra­t­ic cau­cus vot­ed in uni­son to con­firm Lynch, joined by Bernie Sanders and Angus King, the two inde­pen­dents who cau­cus with them.

Ten Repub­li­cans crossed over to pro­vide the votes need­ed for Lynch to win a major­i­ty. The remain­ing Repub­li­cans vot­ed nay.

The roll call from the Pacif­ic North­west was a par­ty-line vote:

Vot­ing Aye: Democ­rats Maria Cantwell and Pat­ty Mur­ray (WA), Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley (OR), Jon Tester (MT)

Vot­ing Nay: Repub­li­cans Jim Risch and Mike Crapo (ID), Steve Daines (MT), Lisa Murkows­ki and Dan Sul­li­van (AK)

The ten Repub­li­cans who crossed over to back Lynch on con­fir­ma­tion were Kel­ly Ayotte of New Hamp­shire, Susan Collins of Maine, Thad Cochran of Mis­sisip­pi, Jeff Flake of Ari­zona, Orrin Hatch of Utah, Ron John­son of Wis­con­sin, Ron Kirk of Illi­nois, Mitch McConnell of Ken­tucky (show­ing lead­er­ship for a change), Lind­sey Gra­ham of South Car­oli­na, and Rob Port­man of Ohio.

Sen­a­tor Ted Cruz of Texas did not par­tic­i­pate in the final vote (he was the only sen­a­tor who was absent), but nev­er­the­less lam­bast­ed Mitch McConnell from afar for lin­ing up votes for clo­ture and then for vot­ing to con­firm Lynch.

The vote on clo­ture was 66–34. Cruz par­tic­i­pat­ed in that vote.

Even though Repub­li­cans now have the U.S. Sen­ate major­i­ty, Cruz is still com­plete­ly unin­ter­est­ed in gov­ern­ing. With­out ques­tion, he’s about the fur­thest from pres­i­den­tial mate­r­i­al that the Repub­li­cans have, with the pos­si­ble excep­tion of Don­ald Trump, who is a com­plete and utter joke.

We extend our con­grat­u­la­tions to Loret­ta Lynch, Amer­i­ca’s first black female attor­ney gen­er­al. We look for­ward to see­ing her assume her new duties.

About the author

Andrew Villeneuve is the founder and executive director of the Northwest Progressive Institute, as well as the founder of NPI's sibling, the Northwest Progressive Foundation. He has worked to advance progressive causes for over two decades as a strategist, speaker, author, and organizer. Andrew is also a cybersecurity expert, a veteran facilitator, a delegate to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, and a member of the Climate Reality Leadership Corps.

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