Dem senator backing Sessions for attorney general

Sen. Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsDem warns Trump: 'Obstruction of justice' to fire Rosenstein Donald Trump’s Rosenstein dilemma White House proposes executive order to Trump that would examine tech companies’ practices MORE's (R-Ala.) bid to become the next attorney general has the backing of a Democratic senator.

Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinDoug Jones to McConnell: Don't 'plow right through' with Kavanaugh Cook Political Report moves Texas Senate race to ‘toss-up’ The Memo: Tide turns on Kavanaugh MORE (D-W.Va.) says he's supporting President-elect Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpSunday shows preview: Trump sells U.N. reorganizing and Kavanaugh allegations dominate Ex-Trump staffer out at CNN amid “false and defamatory accusations” Democrats opposed to Pelosi lack challenger to topple her 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 McConnellDoug Jones to McConnell: Don't 'plow right through' with Kavanaugh Kavanaugh accuser agrees to testify next week GOP, Kavanaugh accuser struggle to reach deal 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 WarrenDemocrats opposed to Pelosi lack challenger to topple her More Massachusetts Voters Prefer Deval Patrick for President than Elizabeth Warren Trump's trade war — firing all cannons or closing the portholes? 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 Mason ReidKavanaugh furor intensifies as calls for new testimony grow Dems can’t ‘Bork’ Kavanaugh, and have only themselves to blame Dem senator: Confidential documents would 'strongly bolster' argument against Kavanaugh's nomination MORE (D-Nev.) ripped Trump in a statement, Manchin called his rhetoric an "absolute embarrassment."