Eric Holder Barack Obama’s Pick for Attorney General?
Eric Holder, former deputy Attorney General in the Clinton Administration, is considered a top candidate to become America’s first African-American Attorney General. According to numberous reports, members of President Barack-Obama’s transition team have spoken with Senate Republicans about their feelings on the matter.
Holder, along with Caroline Kennedy, were part of Obama’s vice presidential search team. He has also been a bundler for the Obama campaign, raising at least $50,000 for the president elect.
Here are some of Holder’s career highlights according to the Covington & Burling LLP -the private firm where he is currently employed- website.
- In 1988, Mr. Holder was nominated by President Reagan to become an Associate Judge of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.
- In 1993, President Clinton nominated Mr. Holder to become the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia.
- In 1997, President Clinton appointed Mr. Holder to serve as Deputy Attorney General
- Mr. Holder was profiled in the June 2008 issue of The American Lawyer and was recognized as one of “The Most 50 Influential Minority Lawyers in America” by The National Law Journal.
- He has also been identified by Legal Times as one of the “Greatest Washington Lawyers of the Past 30 Years.”
Here’s another interesting passage from the Covington & Burlington Website.
As U.S. Attorney, Mr. Holder created a Domestic Violence Unit to more effectively handle those types of tragic cases, implemented a community prosecution project to work hand in hand with residents and local government agencies in order to make neighborhoods safer, supported a renewed enforcement emphasis on hate crimes so that criminal acts of intolerance would be severely punished, developed a comprehensive strategy to improve the manner in which agencies handled cases involving the abuse of children, launched a community outreach program to reconnect the U.S. Attorney’s office with the citizens it serves, revitalized the Victim/Witness Assistance Program to better serve those individuals who were directly affected by crime and developed “Operation Ceasefire,” an initiative designed to reduce violent crime by getting guns out of the hands of criminals.
A source has reported to the Chicago Tribune that the job has already been offered to Holder “conditionally,” and hinges on the vetting process. The main issues surrounding Holder is that he allowed -or more accurately said did not oppose-failed Bill Clinton’s presidential pardon for then-fugitive financier Marc Rich on his last day in office. I don’t understand why that all falls on his shoulders, but I guess I need to do some vetting myself.
On the agenda for the next Attorney General:
- Ending war crimes tribunals at Guantanamo Bay
- The issue of warrantless wiretapping
- Restoring confidence lost after the politically motivated firings of several U.S. Attorney’s by the Bush Administration.
I need to do a little more digging, but this looks like a great pick and it would assuage my concern of whether African-Americans will play a significant role in the Obama Administration.