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Posted at: Feb 10, 2017, 1:58 AM; last updated: Feb 10, 2017, 1:58 AM (IST)

Sessions confirmed as US Attorney General

Says his first task would be getting stay on Trump’s executive order on refugees lifted

Washington, February 9

Jeff Sessions was today narrowly confirmed as the Attorney General of President Donald Trump by a bitterly divided US Senate with the Democrats attempting to derail his nomination over his record on civil rights and immigration.

Sessions (70), who was the Senator from Alabama since 1997, was confirmed as America’s powerful law enforcement officer by surviving a near-party-line vote by 52 to 47.

The final vote for Sessions came after 30 hours of debate from Democrats and a stunning fight between liberal Senator Elizabeth Warren and Senate Republicans which ended in her being forced to sit down after she was accused of impugning Sessions.

Sessions, considered as one of the most conservative lawmakers, resigned as the Alabama Senator later in the night after being confirmed as the 84th Attorney General.

One of the first task on his plate is the win the legal battle for the Trump Administration to get the stay lifted on executive order temporarily blocking all refugee arrivals and immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries to the US.

Sessions was one of the first few top Republican Senators to have endorsed Trump in his race to the White House in the Republican primary. In the past, Sessions has positioned himself as an opponent of H-1B visas, as he believes that this work visa, popular among Indian IT professionals, displaces American workers.

“It was a special night,” Sessions told reporters after his confirmation. “I appreciate the friendship from my colleagues — even those who, many of them who didn’t feel able to vote for me. They were cordial, and so we continue to have good relations and will continue to do the best I can.” The fight over Sessions nomination spurred some of the most jarring, and at times personal attacks, rooted in allegations that Sessions was a racist — claims the Alabama senator and his supporters have fiercely denied.

Senator Dianne Feinstein, the Democratic lawmaker from California attacked Sessions and questioned his credentials. “How will this nominee handle an investigation and prosecution into an unprecedented and major foreign intrusion into the election of the president of the United States? Can he be independent of the White House? I do not believe he can,” said Feinstein. — PTI

Close call

A bitterly divided US Senate confirmed Jeff Sessions' nomination by a near-party-line vote by 52 to 47. Democrats nearly succeeded in derailing his nomination over his record on civil rights and immigration.


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