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Jeff Sessions’s Justice Department: From Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch to zero Black senior staff members

By Eugene Scott,

When President Trump nominated Jeff Sessions to be the attorney general, Democratic lawmakers argued that the then-senator from Alabama becoming the nation’s top prosecutor would be a step backward in advancing the relationship between the Justice Department and people of color.

“I think he’s a racist, I think he’s a throwback and I don’t mind saying it, any day of the week,” Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) told The Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart in May.

Other lawmakers expressed concern about Sessions’s commitment to diversity during his nomination hearing, where Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) attempted to read excerpts of a letter written more than 30 years ago by Coretta Scott King, the wife of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., to Congress to block Sessions’s appointment to a federal bench out of concern that it would “irreparably damage the work of my husband.”


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