On January 30, TCP joined nearly 200 organizations committed to promoting and protecting civil and human rights in urging Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley to delay any vote on Senator Sessions’ confirmation for Attorney General.
In his first week in office, President Trump has made extraordinary claims of executive authority, enacting or proposing sweeping policy changes that raise serious constitutional concerns and pose grave dangers to civil liberties and civil rights. These include executive orders on interior immigration enforcement, border security, and the U.S. refugee program. A fourth draft order on U.S. detention and interrogation practices was leaked but not formally enacted.
Many of these policy changes have been condemned on a bipartisan basis, and in some cases courts have questioned their legality and partially blocked their implementation.
“Given the reported involvement of Senator Sessions in advising President Trump on some of these matters,” the groups wrote to Grassley, “we believe you have a profound duty as Chairman and ask that you do everything necessary to ensure that Committee members are fully informed about the role of Senator Sessions in developing these new orders and proposals and his plans to implement and execute them.”
“It would be hard to overstate the urgency and importance of these recent developments,” the groups continued. “The Senate cannot meaningfully carry out its constitutional obligation, under Article II of the Constitution, to exercise ‘advice and consent’ on the nomination without Senator Sessions providing the Committee with his views on the president’s actions and proposals since his inauguration.”