Dem senator backing Sessions for attorney general

Sen. Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsFederal judge rules Trump defunding sanctuary cities 'unconstitutional on its face' FBI informant gathered years of evidence on Russian push for US nuclear fuel deals, including Uranium One, memos show Alabama election has GOP racing against the clock MORE's (R-Ala.) bid to become the next attorney general has the backing of a Democratic senator.

Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinDemocrats scramble to contain Franken fallout  Overnight Finance: House passes sweeping tax bill in huge victory for GOP | Senate confirms banking regulator | Mulvaney eyed for interim head of consumer agency Overnight Regulation: Senators unveil bipartisan gun background check bill | FCC rolls back media regs | Family leave credit added to tax bill | Senate confirms banking watchdog MORE (D-W.Va.) says he's supporting President-elect Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpO’Malley tells Dems not to fear Trump Right way and wrong way Five things to know about the elephant trophies controversy MORE's pick of Sessions, journalist Salena Zito tweeted Friday afternoon. 

.@Sen_JoeManchin says in our interview in Charleston West Virginia he supports @SenatorSessions for Trump's AG pic.twitter.com/8kMl4IHs5O

— SalenaZito (@SalenaZito) November 18, 2016
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Manchin's support is a big boost to Sessions's chances. He needs a simple majority in the Senate to be confirmed, and the GOP is expected to control 52 seats in the chamber after next month's Louisiana runoff elections. 
 
Republicans have largely rushed to back their colleague, and CNN reported that Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellAlabama election has GOP racing against the clock McConnell PAC demands Moore return its money Klobuchar taking over Franken's sexual assault bill MORE (R-Ky.) has pledged to help push through his nomination.
 
Top Democrats have voiced skepticism about the pick of Sessions, while acknowledging they personally know and get along with the GOP senator. 

Democratic Sens. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.), Chris Coons (Del.), Patrick Leahy (Vt.), Sheldon Whitehouse (R.I.) and Richard Blumenthal(Conn.), all Judiciary Committee members, pledged to give Sessions a fair but thorough vetting process.

Feinstein, who will be the committee's top Democrat in 2017, also appeared to fire a warning shot that Sessions will have to show he’s not too loyal to Trump.

But Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenCordray's legacy of consumer protection worth defending Booker tries to find the right lane  Jones raised 0K a day after first Moore accusers came forward: report MORE (D-Mass.) called on Trump to drop Sessions, warning if he didn't, the Senate could block the GOP senator for the second time. 

Senators blocked Sessions from getting a federal judgeship in 1986 after allegations — that Sessions has repeatedly denied — that he called an African-American assistant U.S. attorney “boy” and called the NAACP and the American Civil Liberties Union “un-American.”

Manchin, who faces a potentially difficult reelection bid in 2018, has created headlines since last week's election for breaking with his party. After outgoing Minority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidVirginia was a wave election, but without real change, the tide will turn again Top Lobbyists 2017: Grass roots Boehner confronted Reid after criticism from Senate floor MORE (D-Nev.) ripped Trump in a statement, Manchin called his rhetoric an "absolute embarrassment."