It’s time to Break It Down!
Now that we are in the formative stages of the 2016 Presidential Election Season, it’s fair to say Hillary Clinton is without question the person Republicans want most to remand to ranks of permanently unemployed Democratic politicians. To be more specific, they want to make certain that she does not succeed in her still unannounced (wink-wink) quest to succeed President Obama as our nation’s Commander-in-Chief.
Interestingly, however, that is not the Party of the Elephant Symbol’s most puzzling paradox. Mrs. Clinton, while biding her time, and artfully evading, or strategically answering the faux indignation laced questions of Republicans and Fox News anchors, and analysts-in-training, is the odds-on favorite to capture the Democratic Party nomination. She will almost certainly reveal her intentions to pursue the nomination…eventually, in other words, in her own good time.
However, let’s be clear, Attorney General (AG) Eric Holder is the current administration staffer not named Barack Obama that the GOP most wants to assume the title, “former administration official.” One does not have to wonder hard or long to about why the GOP harbors so much enmity against Mr. Holder.
A quick look at his Ivy League pedigree, his resume, his distinguished accomplishments, including rising to the highest level of federal government administration, his bold policy initiatives, and his unflappably frank discourse on matters of race and diversity in America and its legal system, show him to be a man of character, courage, and conviction; very much like the man who nominated him, President Obama. That pretty much says it all. That they are close personal friends adds injury to insult to the Party that detests him.
Yes, he is the face of “Fast and Furious (F&F),” the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives Agency gunwalking scandal, not the movie franchise. The initiative derived its name because ATF agents discovered the prime suspect, Jacob Chambers, belonged to a car club. Of course, like a lot of the Obama Administration’s trenchant problems, F&F dates back to the Bush Administration, launching in 2006. As much as anything else, AG Holder routinely serves as a lightning rod for all the things many Republicans hate about President Obama…and then some.
For all the pushback President Obama received as a result of his comments about Skip Gates, the Harvard Professor who was harassed by a Cambridge police officer while attempting to enter his own home, about Trayvon Martin, the Florida teen murdered by George Zimmerman, and anything else regarding race relations in America, he really has tread lightly when it comes to the subject. AG Holder, on the other hand, not fettered by the constraints of the Oval Office, has on occasion spoken bluntly and directly about the issue.
In a February 19, 2009 speech commemorating Black History Month, the first speech after his confirmation, he said to an overflow crowd at the Justice Department (DOJ):
“Though this nation has proudly thought of itself as an ethnic melting pot, in things racial we have always been and continue to be, in too many ways, essentially a nation of cowards.”
“On Saturdays and Sundays, America in the year 2009 does not, in some ways, differ significantly from the country that existed some 50 years ago. This is truly sad.”
Earlier this month, AG Holder’s DOJ released twin reports on the Ferguson Missouri Police Department. One found that Officer Darren Wilson did not violate Michael Brown’s civil rights when he shot him. The report effectively validated the findings of the Grand Jury, which opted not to indict Wilson. Conservatives far and wide hailed this report. They concluded, wrongly in my opinion that the officer acted properly in killing Wilson. I believe he profiled Wilson as policemen in Ferguson did to blacks for years, and had every opportunity to call for backup before confronting the suspects alone in that neighborhood. This however is a discussion for another time.
In the other report, of which conservatives tend to either overlook, or offer scathing reviews, the DOJ found the Ferguson Police Department had routinely and consistently violated the civil rights of African Americans for many years. I posted about the report on March 4th (https://thesphinxofcharlotte.com/2015/03/04/ferguson-the-department-of-justice-speaks/), so I will not re-plow that field. You can check it out at you leisure, in the event you missed it.
Suffice it to say, opposition to Mr. Holder is and has been intense. The Republican led House of Representatives held him in criminal contempt of Congress in 2012. When he announced his resignation last September, House Judiciary Chair Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) said he “Welcome(d) the news.”
Here’s the rub. If there is one person the GOP disdains more than AG Holder, it is President Obama. Much of the Party’s Leadership coalesced to forge a pact aimed at denying President Obama any victories, and limiting to one term. Clearly, they failed in both endeavors, but apparently they believe in the axiom, “Nothing beats a failure, but a try.” Hence, they continue to persevere and try. As a result of this anti-Obama compulsion, they are delaying Ms. Lynch’s Confirmation Hearings.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch Connell (R-KY), told CNN’s Dana Bash, on this past Sunday’s “State of the Union” Show, he plans to hold up Ms. Lynch’s confirmation until the Senate passes a controversial human trafficking bill. In his words:
“This will have an impact on the timing of considering a new attorney general. I had hoped to turn to her next week, but if we can’t finish the trafficking bill, she will be put off again.”
It has already been 160 days since President Obama nominated Ms. Lynch. This is already the longest delay in confirming an AG since President Reagan nominated Edwin Meese in 1985, thirty years ago.
Undoubtedly, from a GOP standpoint, the best thing about Ms. Lynch is she is not AG Holder. It is generally anticipated that once the hearings convene, she will be confirmed. However, the irony is, the longer the GOP delays the probable, if not inevitable, the longer Eric Holder retains the title United States Attorney General. Works for me! In fact, I like to call this deluded detour from responsible governance and common sense, “Eric Holder/Loretta Lynch: The Contrarians’ Confounding Conundrum!”
I’m done; holla back!
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