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  1. #1
    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    May 2006

    GOP to Dems: Assault on Sessions will carry a price

    By SUSAN CRABTREE • 1/5/17 2:23 PM

    Republican senators are warning Democrats that their efforts to resurrect racism charges against Sen. Jeff Sessions' nomination for attorney general won't derail his confirmation and will only serve to poison the well for future bipartisanship early this Congress.

    Since Sessions' nomination, Democrats and liberal civil rights groups have reiterated racism charges from 1986 that sunk the Alabama senator's appointment to a federal judgeship by President Reagan. Sessions' supporters and those who believe some of the charges are overblown have spoken out on his behalf in recent weeks in an attempt to debunk the 30-year-old claims.

    Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., who calls Sessions a friend of 18 years even though he doesn't agree with all of his policy positions, has said Democrats' decision to re-level charges of racism against the Alabama senator could poison the well for any chance of cross-party cooperation this year.

    "I think it's very questionable what the Democrats are doing," he told the Washington Examiner. "It has a way of pulling our string of comity in the Senate — it's been pulled pretty hard and it looks like we're going to go through some more pulling."

    If Democrats decide to call witnesses who made the original charges from the 1986 Judiciary Committee hearings, Roberts said it could seriously hamper any chance for bipartisan cooperation this session.

    "I hope that doesn't happen," Roberts said. "I mean, that really eliminates any possibility for meaningful bipartisan action because then that opens the door for us to respond in kind and then it keeps devolving and poisons the well for any cooperation down the line."

    Other Republican senators said Democratic efforts to cast Sessions as a racist simply won't work regardless of whom the Democrats call as witnesses because the Alabama senator, a 20-year veteran of the Senate, has worked well with so many Democrats over the years.

    "We all know Jeff and have worked with him for a long time," said Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D. "I think you are going to see strong support for him among Republicans but also some Democrats too."

    "He's worked with a lot of Democratic members of the Senate for a long time and built up good relations," he added.

    Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark., is bracing for the worse but still predicts Sessions' confirmation with the support of some Democrats, including Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., who has already said he will support his nomination.

    Key Democrats won't say whether they plan to call some of the same witnesses that made racism allegations against Sessions in 1986.

    "The witnesses have not been decided at this point, so I don't want to comment," Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., told the Washington Examiner.

    Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., also said he couldn't comment on the witnesses Democrats plan to call for hearings scheduled for Jan. 10 and 11 because they are still in flux.

    Still, he said, questions about the racism charges from 30 years ago are legitimate to raise considering the important role the new attorney general will play in prioritizing Justice Department prosecutions and actions.

    "To wall off a part of someone's career is a disservice to the American people," he said in a brief interview. "At the same time, I hope we will be completely bipartisan and focus on the facts and merits of each individual nominee."

    Blumenthal, a member of the Judiciary Committee, said the attorney general post is not just a run-of-the-mill Cabinet appointment because the administration's top law enforcer will make decisions on whom to prosecute and whom to investigate.

    "It is a special position with an important role," he said.

    After meeting with Sessions late Wednesday afternoon, Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., who also serves on the judiciary panel, declined to call Sessions a racist but raised the past allegations.

    "There were questions raised on race from a lot of different perspectives," he said of Sessions' 1986 Senate Judiciary Committee hearing that resulted in denying him the judgeship.

    "Certainly there are elements of his background that raise questions … he said to me several times that this was not a concern – that he believed everybody deserves fair treatment. I have more question to ask," Durbin recounted.

    Durbin said he and Sessions had discussed a number of issues, including the Voting Rights Act and how he feels about the push from some conservative circles to place further requirements for voting, such as requiring voter IDs.

    "We talked about the Voting Rights Act – he voted for it [in 1986] but then when the Supreme Court came out and restricted it, he applauded their decision," Durbin told reporters after the meeting.

    On requiring IDs to vote, Durbin said he told him laws in North Carolina were "tailor-made to go after those people color and low-income and others, and I said there is no basis for this – there is no voter fraud to justify this."

    "He didn't back off his basic position" of supporting more ID requirements for voting.

    Durbin also expressed concern that Sessions wouldn't commit to providing more Justice Department resources to combat a record number of homicides in Chicago Illinois over the last year – 760 homicides, which he said is more than Los Angeles and New York combined. He also said Sessions was reluctant to say whether he would implement new recommendations the Justice Department's civil rights division is expected to release "any day now" on its investigation of the Chicago Police Departments record of dealing with the black community.

    "I know that nominees are cautious in these types of meetings, and they should be and I guess I understand that," Durbin said.

    Still, he said he was disappointed by Sessions' response to the request for commitments on these two items because he såid they were easy questions to answer, and in the case of the DOJ civil rights division recommendations, would serve as "an important step in moving Chicago forward in the current situation it faces."

    "I did not hear a commitment from Sessions to proceed," Durbin said, adding that if Sessions becomes attorney general, he hopes he will reconsider.

    Durbin also said he was not surprised that Sessions is not supporting his effort to convince President-elect Trump not to reverse a controversial executive order of President Obama's that would allow certain children of illegal immigrants who have been living in the United States for a number of years to remain in the country without the threat of deportation.

    Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on Wednesday signaled that he would vote against Sessions nomination based on the Alabama Republican's consistent support for more immigration restrictions.
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Aug 2005
    Americans are going to have to shun these political claims of racism. Accusing someone of being a racist is for the most part a lie, regardless of what the person may have said from time to time, true or not, regardless of how you perceive them for your political purposes. Being accused of being a racist based on a joke or a term is false, a lie, a defamation, and a degradation.

    We have free speech in this country, and our speech, terms and language change with the times, trends, fads, youth, education, experiences, environments, and professional endeavors. Anyone can tell a joke, make a sarcastic comment, use a term, none of which holds the proof of racism. I use the term "boy" frequently, the same as I use the term "girl" frequently, when referring to a male or a female, regardless of their race. I use the terms with my family. I don't believe Sessions used the term "boy" with his aid but even if he did, so what? I don't believe he told his aid to be respectful when he spoke with "white people", but what if he did, so what? Running your mouth or being disrespectful to any people including white people would not reflect well on you.

    Since this is really so fundamental and so basic to what we know to be true, we have to look deeper into what are the real reasons the Democrats are trying to frame Sessions as a racist to defeat his nomination, because we know it has nothing to do with racism against blacks.

    There is only 1 reason why Democrats oppose Jeff Sessions and it's his position on illegal immigration. We know the Democrats are all on the take with the foreign drug cartels which is why they support illegal immigration in defiance of federal law and the well-being of the American People of all races. Any Republican who would dare to oppose or make this confirmation difficult is on the take with the drug cartels. It's that simple. This isn't a complicated issue.

    Trump won 30 states. Jeff Sessions reflects the views of the Americans in those 30 states. If US Senators from those 30 states vote to reflect the views and goals of their state-wide constituents, then Jeff Sessions should be confirmed with flying colors and any person on the Judiciary Committee that tries to interfere with that will of the people, needs to be ejected from the US Congress next election.

    The Democrats need to understand that this racist ploy against Sessions will back-fire on them and here's why. Most black Americans are fully aware that they are being exploited by the Democratic Party that pretends to wage a war on their behalf that Republicans won for black Americans long ago. Is there still work to be done? Yes, solely because the Democratic Party is still waging it's shadow war on black Americans through illegal immigration. Democrats are the two-headed evil serpent of the civil rights movement.
    A Nation Without Borders Is Not A Nation - Ronald Reagan
    Save America, Deport Congress! - Judy

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