Franken to oppose Sessions

Sen. Al FrankenAlan (Al) Stuart FrankenHarrison seen as front-runner to take over DNC at crucial moment The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the UAE Embassy in Washington, DC - Trump, Biden clash over transition holdup, pandemic plans The Hill's Morning Report - Fearing defeat, Trump claims 'illegal' ballots MORE (D-Minn.) says he will oppose Sen. Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsRosenstein: Zero tolerance immigration policy 'never should have been proposed or implemented' Sessions, top DOJ officials knew 'zero tolerance' would separate families, watchdog finds Sen. Hawley tramples the 2020 vote in his run to 2024 MORE (R-Ala.), President-elect Donald TrumpDonald TrumpCIA chief threatened to resign over push to install Trump loyalist as deputy: report Azar in departure letter says Capitol riot threatens to 'tarnish' administration's accomplishments Justice Dept. argues Trump should get immunity from rape accuser's lawsuit MORE’s pick for attorney general.

“I’m going to vote against Sen. Sessions,” Franken said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Friday. "I just don’t feel comfortable that he would protect all Americans’ rights.”

Franken's announcement comes a day after Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerBiden and the new Congress must protect Americans from utility shutoffs 'Almost Heaven, West Virginia' — Joe Manchin and a 50-50 Senate Democrats looking to speed through Senate impeachment trial MORE (D-N.Y.) said he opposes Sessions as the nation’s top law enforcement official.


“After reviewing his record and giving careful consideration to his answers during the hearing, I am not confident in Senator Sessions’ ability to be a defender of the rights of all Americans, or to serve as an independent check on the incoming administration,” Schumer said in a statement Thursday.

Franken accused Sessions of overstating the number of desegregation cases he had prosecuted during his confirmation hearing Tuesday.

“Our country needs an attorney general who doesn’t overstate his record,” he said.

Sessions said in a 2009 interview he had prosecuted between 20 and 30 desegregation cases. He acknowledged during Tuesday’s hearing, though, that the number of cases in which he was lead prosecutor was likely smaller than that.

Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) on Wednesday made history as the first sitting senator to testify against another sitting senator in a Cabinet hearing.

“Sen. Sessions has not demonstrated a commitment to a central requisite of the job to aggressively pursue the congressional mandate of civil rights, equal rights and justice for all of our citizens,” he told the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Critics have made Sessions’s record on race and civil and voting rights a key focus of his confirmation hearing. Sessions needs 50 votes to win confirmation in the Senate, meaning he could be confirmed without any votes from Democrats.