Given our coverage of the unprecedented politicization of the Department of Justice under President Bush, we thought this passage from Barack Obama’s prepared remarks this morning — at which he announced Eric Holder as his pick for Attorney General, among other selections — was worth noting:
Eric also has the combination of toughness and independence that we need at the Justice Department. Let me be clear: the Attorney General serves the American people. And I have every expectation that Eric will protect our people, uphold the public trust, and adhere to our Constitution.
In other words, Obama is sending a message that Holder won’t see his role as being the president’s personal lawyer — which was how Alberto Gonzales, who had been Bush’s lawyer both in the White House and in Texas, seemed to view the job.