12.22.08

Holder Nomination Receives Broad Support

Law Enforcement, Crime Victims Advocates, Civil Rights Organizations And Republican Officials Urge Confirmation Of Eric H. Holder Jr. As Attorney General Of The United States

WASHINGTON– President-elect Barack Obama’s pick to be the next Attorney General of the United States is receiving broad, bipartisan support from law enforcement officers, organizations, and advocates across the country.  Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Monday released letters from more than four dozen individuals and organizations that support the nomination of Eric H. Holder Jr. to be Attorney General of the United States, including support from law enforcement, crime victim advocates, civil rights organizations, and former Republican officials.

National organizations including  the National District Attorney’s Association, the National Association of Police Organizations, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the National Association of Assistant United States Attorneys, the National Center for Victims of Crime, the National Organization for Victim Assistance, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the Asian American Justice Center, the National Council of La Raza, the National Council of Jewish Women, the NAACP, and many others have written to the Senate Judiciary Committee to express their support for Holder. 

The endorsement from the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights and a number of civil rights organizations expressed “strong support for the historic nomination of Eric Holder to the position of Attorney General of the United States,” citing Holder as “among the most qualified nominees for Attorney General in the last fifty years and . . . uniquely suited to lead the Department at this moment in time.”  The endorsement noted: “The nation urgently needs an Attorney General dedicated to restoring the independence and integrity of the Department, with an unquestionable commitment to the Constitution and the rule of law.  Eric Holder is the right person for this job.”

James B. Comey, the prosecutor in charge of the Marc Rich case and the criminal investigation into the Marc Rich pardon, described Holder as “a smart, decent, humble man, who knows and loves the Department and has demonstrated his commitment to the rule of law across an entire career.” Comey concluded, “Eric Holder should be confirmed as Attorney General.”

Letters of support have been received from the following organizations and individuals.  All letters will be available online.

Law Enforcement:

National District Attorney’s Association
National Association of Police Organizations (NAPO)
Police Executive Research Forum (PERF)
International Association of Chiefs of Police
National Association of Assistant U.S. Attorneys
James B. Comey, former Deputy Attorney General, Dec. 2003-Aug. 2005
John P. Sarcone, Polk County Attorney, Iowa 

Crime Victims:

National Center for Victims of Crime
Mothers Against Drunk Driving
International Organization for Victim Assistance
National Crime Victim/Survivor Assistance and Allied Organizations
American Probation and Parole Association
Appriss
Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
Illinois Victims
Justice Solutions
Maryland Crime Victims’ Resource Center
National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center
National Leadership Council for Crime Victim Justice
The National Organization of Victims of “Juvenile Lifers”
Partnership for Safety and Justice
Security on Campus
Anne K. Seymore, National Crime Victim Advocate
Sharon J. English, Homicide Victim Survivor, Crime Victim Services Advocate
Mario Thomas Gaboury, J.D., Ph.D., Professor and Chair of Criminal Justice, University  of New Haven, Ct.
Dan Levey, National President of Parents of Murdered Children (POMC), advisor for Victims to Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano

Civil Rights:

Leadership Conference on Civil Rights
Asian American Justice Center
National Council of La Raza
National Council of Jewish Women
National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)
NAACP Legal Defense & Education Fund
Human Rights Campaign
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law
National Organization for Women
Planned Parenthood Federation of America
Feminist Majority
National Abortion Federation
The Judge David L. Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law
National Health Law Program
National Fair Housing Alliance
National Partnership for Women & Families
National Urban League
Center for Inquiry
American for Democratic Action, Inc.
People for the American Way
Alliance for Justice
American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations
Carla Hills, former Assistant Attorney General, Civil Rights Division; former U.S Trade Representative

On Dec. 1, Obama announced his intent to nominate Holder, a former Deputy Attorney General, former U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, and a former judge for the D.C. Superior Court appointed by President Reagan.  Leahy has scheduled the confirmation hearing for Holder’s nomination for January 15, 2009, at 9:30 a.m. in the historic Senate Caucus Room.  Last week, Holder returned the completed bipartisan Committee questionnaire, and provided supplemental materials on Friday.  To watch the hearing live, and to read documents related to the Holder nomination, visit the Senate Judiciary Committee website.

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