Holder Wins Judiciary Committee Approval
Posted Jan 28, 2009 11:48 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss
The Senate Judiciary Committee has approved the nomination of Eric Holder to become attorney general.
The vote was 17-2, reports The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times. A full Senate vote could come as early as tomorrow.
The only senators voting against Holder were Republicans John Cornyn of Texas and Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, the Associated Press reports. The ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee, Arlen Specter, had been Holder’s harshest Senate critic. But before the vote, he said he decided to support Holder because of his good record and support within the law enforcement community.
Specter had questioned Holder’s role in the pardon of fugitive financier Marc Rich, but said today that Holder allayed his concerns. "I think it was important that Eric Holder was willing to admit publicly his mistake in the Marc Rich pardon," Specter said.
Specter also said Holder had addressed Republican fears that he would prosecute officials involved in harsh interrogations of terrorism suspects. Specter says he discussed the issue in a meeting with Holder last Thursday, according to a separate Legal Times story. "I got a satisfactory answer,” Specter said.