The Associated Press
Employee

This Nov 17, 2017, File Photo, Merrick Garland, Supreme Court candidate for former President Barack Obama, enters the Federal District Court in Washington (AP Photo / Andrew Harnik, file)

WASHINGTON –
US. President-elect Joe Biden has selected Merrick Garland, a federal appeals court judge who was berated by Republicans for a seat on the Supreme Court in 2016, as his attorney general, two people familiar with the selection process said on Wednesday

In choosing Garland, Biden turns to a seasoned judge who held senior positions in the Justice Department decades ago, including as chief of law enforcement for the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, the election will force the Senate Republicans to go ahead and nominate someone fight that they spurned in 2016 – and refuse to even hold hearings if a Supreme Court position becomes vacant – but Biden can rely on Garland’s credentials and reputation as a moderator to ensure confirmation

Biden is slated to announce Garland’s appointment on Thursday along with other senior division heads including former Homeland Security Advisor Lisa Monaco as assistant attorney general and former Justice Department civil rights chief Vanita Gupta as assistant attorney general, who will also become assistant attorney general for civil rights Kristen Clarke , to appoint the president of the Civil Rights Lawyers’ Committee, an advocacy group,

Garland was selected over other finalists, including Alabama Sen. Doug Jones and former Assistant Attorney General Sally Yates spoke on condition of anonymity to those familiar with the trial.One said Biden viewed Garland as an attorney general who can restore the integrity of the Justice Department and as someone who, after being under both presidents political parties served in the Justice Department, is respected by impartial career workers

If confirmed, Garland would face immediate challenges, including an ongoing criminal investigation into Biden’s son Hunter, as well as calls by many Democrats to initiate investigations into Trump after his departure, a lawyer special investigation into the origins of the Russia investigation also remains open and compelling a new attorney general to decide how to deal with it and what to publish

Garland would also inherit a Justice Department that has had four tumultuous years and, after months of mass protests by law enforcement against the deaths of Black Americans, likely shouldn’t focus solely on civil rights issues and a national police policy overhaul

It was unclear how Garland’s selection would be received by black and Latin American advocates who campaigned for a black attorney general or someone with a background in civil rights issues and criminal justice reform in the selection of Gupta and Clarke, two women with significant experience in the The area of ​​civil rights, however, appeared to be aimed at addressing these concerns and signaling that progressive causes will take precedence in the new government

Garland would also return to a Justice Department fundamentally different from the one he left Sept. 11 attacks were years away, the ministry’s national security division had not yet been established, and an increase in aggressive cyber and counter-espionage threats from foreign adversaries has made counties such as China, Russia and North Korea top priorities for federal law enforcement

Monaco brings significant national security experience to the department, including cybersecurity – a particularly pressing issue like the US. The government is facing a devastating hack by federal agencies that have linked officials with Russia

Some of the problems from Garland’s first stint in the department remain, however Police-minority tensions, an issue that flared up after Rodney King’s beating in Los Angeles in 1992, remains a pressing issue, especially after a summer racist unrest that hit American cities following the May murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis

And the FBI is grappling with a surge in violent anti-government and racially motivated extremists, a known threat to Garland, who, in 1995, as a senior Justice Department official helped direct the federal government’s response to the bombing of a government building in Oklahoma City who killed 168 people The bomber Timothy McVeigh, who was later executed

Garland described the job as the “most important thing I did” and was known for keeping a framed photo of Alfred P of Oklahoma City’s Murrah Federal Building in his Washington courthouse

At the time of the bombing, Garland was 42 years old and assistant attorney general, first lieutenant to attorney general Janet Reno. He was selected to go to Oklahoma City, the senior Justice Department official, and headed the prosecution for a month until a permanent attorney general was named / p>

Garland was selected for the job over other candidates, including former Alabama Senator Doug Jones, who lost his Senate seat last month, and former Assistant Attorney General Sally Yates

It is rare, but not unprecedented, that attorneys general have previously served as judges. It happened in 2007 when President George W. Bush selected Michael Mukasey, a former Manhattan federal judge, for the job of Eric Holder, President Barack Obama’s first attorney general, who was also previously a Supreme Court Justice

Garland was proposed for a seat on the Supreme Court by former President Barack Obama in 2016 following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia, but Republicans refused to hold Obama’s hearings in the final year of Obama’s tenure.The spot was later held by Justice Neil Gorsuch during the Trump administration busy

Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to push the Senate nomination in the final months of Obama’s tenure.He was criticized by the Democrats this fall for taking the reverse approach to promoting the election of President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court, Amy Coney Barrett, confirming He said the difference this time around is that the White House and Senate are controlled by the same political parties

A year later, after FBI Director James Comey was fired, McConnell actually floated Garland’s name as a replacement for that position, though Garland was reportedly not interested

Garland has been with the Federal Court of Appeals in Washington since 1997. Prior to that, he worked in private practice as well as a federal prosecutor, senior civil servant in the Department of Justice’s crime department and deputy assistant attorney general

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Merrick Garland

World News – CA – Biden Appoints Judge Merrick Garland as Attorney General

Source: https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/america-votes/biden-to-name-judge-merrick-garland-as-attorney-general-1.5255752