Judiciary Dem Flags Missing Documents In Sessions’ AG Questionaire

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The top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee flagged Tuesday a number of what she believed to be missing documents in Sen. Jeff Sessions’ (R-AL) Attorney General nomination questionnaire. In a letter to the Judiciary Chair Chuck Grassley (R-IA), the incoming ranking member Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) also asked for more time to review the Sessions’ records.

Grassley had previously signaled he wanted to expedite Sessions’ confirmation hearings for before President-elect Donald Trump is inaugurated. They are scheduled to begin Jan. 10, according to NPR.

As part of the confirmation process, nominees that come through the Judiciary Committee often submit questionnaires and other documents for committee members to review ahead of the hearings. Sessions submitted his confirmation documents Friday evening, the letter said.

According to Feinstein’s letter, Sessions’ submission was missing copies of a number of speeches he has given over the years, including a a speech at an event called “Restoration Weekend” from 2003 and a 2007 speech for an event with the Federation for American Immigration Reform, a group that seeks to decrease immigration.

Feinstein also said Sessions gave a “a shorthand response that is not responsive to the question” about his involvement in political campaigns.

“Given the lengthy public life that Senator Sessions has led, it is not surprising that he and his staff have had great difficulty in providing a complete submission to the committee on the accelerated timetable that has been set forth,” Feinstein said. “But that does not in any way lessen this committee’s obligation to obtain a full record and completed response to its questionnaire for a nomination to the highest law enforcement position in our government.”

Additionally, NPR reported, his questionnaire included new cases, including some civil rights cases, it said he was involved in when he was a U.S. Attorney in Alabama that were not among the cases listed in the materials he submitted when he was up for a federal judgeship in the mid-1980s. His confirmation for the judgeship was eventually rejected by the then-GOP-led committee after a colleague testified he expressed racist sentiments and made derogatory remarks about civil rights groups.

Read Feinstein’s letter below:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tierney Sneed is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. She previously worked for U.S. News and World Report. She grew up in Florida and attended Georgetown University.
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