The saying ‘what goes around comes around” could well apply to Jefferson Bueregard Sessions and his assessment of being tapped to be the next attorney general.
Hand-picked three decades ago by President Ronald Reagan, the then state senator in Alabama, and ambitious Republican was nominated for ascendance to become a federal judge in the US District Court Southern District of Alabama.
His nomination never made it past the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Because of his blatant and racist anti-Black stance he was denied.
Although he aspired to the lofty position he was summarily rejected because of his bigotry.
That the next president of the United States now wants to overturn that decision by choosing him 30 years later to a cabinet position to decide the law of the land could well find application to a theory of vindication.
Sessions’ long road to Trump tower is still pending and ironically the saying might also be suited to one of his principal detractor — Coretta Scott King — who wrote a nine-page letter to the committee in deference to his appointment three decades ago.
Addressed to then chairman, Sen. Strom Thurmond, the widow of Dr. Marin Luther King Jr. penned a scathing reproach to his nomination. Written on stationary from the Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Non-Violent Social Change on March 19, 1986, when its corporate officers included vice presidents, Harry Belafonte, Walter Fauntroy and Andrew Young, the defiant letter stated:
“Anyone who has used the power of his office as United States attorney to intimidate and chill the free exercise of the ballot by citizens should not be elevated to our courts.”
King did not mince her words, she said: “Mr. Sessions has used the awesome power of his office in a shabby attempt to intimidate and frighten elderly Black voters. For this reprehensible conduct, he should not be rewarded with a federal judgeship.”
“I do sincerely urge you to oppose the confirmation of Mr. Sessions.”
Eighteen years after her husband was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee, the widow punctuated the cover page of the passionate plea with a personal and final request.
Her words resonated deeply and may have been the nail that hammered rejection of Jeff Sesions’ bid to become a federal judge.
According to CNN, such a decision has only been recorded twice in 50 years.
Although King asked that her statement be placed in the hearing record, until last week, the compelling document remained elusive to the public.
Reportedly, the Washington Post unearthed the letter and published it in its entirety one week ago.
The publication revealed that King’s letter and her opposition was definitely a key element that ended Sessions’ ambitious path to the bench.
Allegedly, current Judiciary Chair Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) had the sole authority to release the letter.
Repeatedly King blasted Sessions’ apparent behavior as a U.S. attorney, saying that “his politically-motivated voting-fraud prosecutions,” and his apparent “indifference toward criminal violations of Civil Rights law, indicates that he lacks the temperament, fairness and judgment to be a federal judge.”
Throughout the letter, King repeated her concern that “Sessions’ nomination, if confirmed, would only prove to be a step backward for voting rights.”
Sessions was born in Selma, Alabama.
An early supporter of Donald J. Trump, Sessions has been accused of calling a Black attorney “boy.” He also allegedly referred to Civil Rights groups “un-American” and has been accused of saying that his only issue with the Ku Klux Klan is drug use.
The 69-year-old, four-term Alabama Republican is a hard-liner on free trade and immigration. One of his arguments against immigration is that prospective immigrants do not have constitutional protections.
Acclaimed to be a champion of anti-Muslim and anti-immigration extremists, Sessions’ approval was described by New York Sen. Chuck Schumer this way:
“Given some of his past statements and his staunch opposition to immigration reform, I am very concerned about what he would do with the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice and want to hear what he has to say.”
Sessions opposed all of Pres. Barack Obama’s U.S. Supreme Court picks and also voted against the nomination of Attorney General Loretta Lynch, citing her support for the president’s executive actions that shielded some undocumented immigrants from deportation.
Sessions “is a world-class legal mind and considered a truly great attorney general and U.S. attorney in the state of Alabama,” the 45th president said in a statement nine days after his election.
“Jeff is greatly admired by legal scholars and virtually everyone who knows him.”
Asian Americans Advancing Justice posted on their web portal that Sessions is unfit for the job.
“Sessions has opposed Civil Rights legislation and led anti-immigrant efforts throughout his Senate career. His record of disenfranchising and denying the rights of people of color, immigrants, and Muslim communities, as well as his overtly racist statements made during his career as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Alabama make him unfit for the position of attorney general of the United States.”
During confirmation hearings last week Sessions faced a barrage of protestors some dressed in KKK outfits who jeered the Donald J. Trump nominee.
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