Vanita Gupta has been confirmed to be Associate Attorney General by a mostly party-line vote. She remains one of the most controversial nominations made by the Biden Administration so far. Presidents are entitled to nominate qualified individuals to fill political positions, but as Republican Leader Mitch McConnell explained on the Senate floor earlier today, Gupta falls outside of the mainstream:Read more
After the Senate Judiciary Committee was tied on whether to advance Vanita Gupta's nomination as Associate Attorney General last month, Senate Democrats have begun the process to advance Gupta's nomination to the floor despite remaining questions about her record in several key areas including her position on defunding the police and her relationship with the drug company Aventor. Senator Cornyn has warned that she may be the Biden Administration's "most dangerous" nominee to the Department of Justice.Read more
Earlier today, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a confirmation hearing on the nomination of Kristen Clarke to be Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice. Clarke is one of the more controversial individuals that President Joe Biden has nominated to hold high-ranking positions in the Administration as RNLA previously noted here and here. At issue most prominently during today's hearing was Clarke's positions on defunding the police, religious liberty, race, and voting rights.Read more
Earlier today, the Senate Judiciary Committee considered the controversial nomination of Vanita Gupta to be associate attorney general. The vote on Gupta's nomination ended in a tie. As reported by CNN:
The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday deadlocked in a party-line vote on the nomination of Vanita Gupta to be associate attorney general, but her confirmation is still on track with the expected support of moderate Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia.
The Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to advance Vanita Gupta's nomination as associate attorney general to the full Senate next week. Hopefully some Senate Judiciary Democrats will reconsider their support. As Senator John Cornyn points out, Gupta could be the Biden Administration's "most dangerous" nominee to the Department of Justice:
"I still am very concerned about Ms. Gupta's nomination," Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, said, citing her responses to the committee's questions. "She has avoided answering questions, or as in the case of her testimony here in front of the committee, she's completely, 180 degrees -- taken a 180-degrees position different from what she has on a previous occasion as recently as last summer when we had her before the committee [to] testify on police reform."Read more
Biden Administration Attorney General Nominee Merrick Garland has pledged not to follow in the footsteps of the Obama-Biden Administration Attorneys General and act as a “wingman” for the President. He will almost certainly be confirmed with bipartisan support.
However, the same cannot be said about Associate Attorney General Nominee Vanita Gupta and Civil Rights Division nominee Kristin Clarke. Arguably, Judge Garland’s toughest moment in the hearing yesterday came when “Garland appeared to lose his composure as he defended Gupta and Clarke.”Read more
Today was Biden’s Attorney General nominee Judge Merrick Garland’s hearing. There was not a lot of substance and listening to the Democrats speak, you would think that former Attorneys General William Barr and Jeff Sessions were the most partisan in history. Senator Ted Cruz did a great job of pointing out who really was a partisan attorney general, President Obama's Attorney General Eric Holder:
While refusing to comment on individual past AGs, AG nominee nominee Garland agrees that DOJ should not be politicized . And while not explicitly rebuking Holder, he makes clear that AGs cannot act in the fashion that Holder and his successor Lynch are accused of doing. 2/2— RNLA ⚖️ (@TheRepLawyer) February 22, 2021
.@TedCruz: "Eric Holder described his role as attorney general as being the wingman for President Obama."— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) February 22, 2021
Merrick Garland: "I can assure you I do not regard myself as anything other than the lawyer for the people of the United States. I'm not the president's lawyer." pic.twitter.com/R4ifpDmrFO
In a normal world, there would be front page screaming headlines of the FBI’s complete failure regarding Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants. As the Obama appointee Inspector General Michael Horowitz reported on March 30:
As a result of our audit work to date and as described below, we do not have confidence that the FBI has executed its Woods Procedures in compliance with FBI policy. . . . our testing of FISA applications to the associated Woods Files identified apparent errors or inadequately supported facts in all of the 25 applications we reviewed, and interviews to date with available agents or supervisors in field offices generally have confirmed the issues we identifiedRead more
The Justice Department is moving to drop charges against two Russian companies that were accused of funding a social media campaign to sway American public opinion during the 2016 U.S. presidential election. . . .
Concord Management and Consulting LLC and Concord Catering were among three companies and 13 individuals charged in 2018 by special counsel Robert Mueller in a conspiracy to spread disinformation on social media during the 2016 presidential race. The effort was aimed at dividing American public opinion and sowing discord in the electorate, officials said. . . .
The case was one of the signature indictments from Mueller’s two-year Russia investigation.Read more
ICYMI: The Left, Right and Victims Are Concerned by the DOJ IG’s Findings About FISA and the Trump Campaign
There is a lot to unpack in Department of Justice Inspector General Michael Horowitz's report on the review of four FISA applications. It is impossible in one short blog post to detail all of the things uncovered. The only safe conclusion is all Americans should be upset by this report. As one group said (emphasis added):
For instance, the litany of problems with the Carter Page surveillance applications demonstrates how the secrecy shrouding the government’s one-sided FISA approval process breeds abuse. . . . The FBI must also adopt higher standards for investigations involving constitutionally protected sensitive activities, such as political campaigns.
That statement is not from a Republican or a conservative group, it is from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Speaking of Carter Page, he has an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal which begins:Read more