We join with a broad coalition of civil rights and civil liberties organizations in opposing the nomination of Jeff Sessions to be Attorney General. As AG, he will be our nation’s top law enforcement official responsible for protecting the Constitutional rights of every person in the US. But he has spent his career undermining the rights of people of color, women, LGBTQ people, immigrants, religious minorities, and people with disabilities. And he’s no friend of civil liberties either.
Please contact your Senators and tell them to staunchly oppose the nomination of Jeff Sessions to be Attorney General:
The above phone number is sponsored by the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, and will ask for your zip code, you will be connected with your Senator’s office. You can simply tell the person who answers that you are constituent and you want your Senator to oppose the nomination of Jeff Sessions to be Attorney General.
Senator Sessions’ record on civil rights and civil liberties is deplorable. Here are just a few examples:
Surveillance: Sessions has been a leading proponent of expanding the government’s surveillance of ordinary Americans at the expense civil rights and civil liberties. He has defended the USA PATRIOT Act, calling it a “restrained piece of legislation,” and recently voted to expand it to grant the FBI even more power to access our personal information without a warrant. He has spent his 20-year career in the Senate arguing for broad, often unchecked surveillance powers in intelligence investigations, even though those investigations pose unnecessarily invasive risks to privacy.
Torture: Sessions has consistently failed to oppose torture. He was one of only nine members of the US Senate to vote against a 2005 amendment barring cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment of detainees in US custody. In 2015, Sessions again voted against torture prohibitions when he voted against holding the FBI and the CIA to the same standards of interrogation laid out in the US Army Field Manual (which forbids torture).
Criminal Justice: Sessions continues to embrace a number of antiquated views about criminal justice, and is a vociferous opponent of any criminal justice reform. He loves the death penalty, has voted against reducing the sentences of nonviolent drug offenders, and has continued to support civil asset forfeiture. He is also tight with the private prison industry.
Immigration: Sessions is right in line with Donald Trump on securing the borders, banning Muslims, and keeping Syrian refugees (especially Muslim ones) out of the United States.
Voting Rights: He called called the Voting Rights Act “intrusive” for seeking to protect eligible minority voters.
Please make two phone calls today, to Senators Cardin and Van Hollen to tell them to oppose Sessions.
Sources and further reading:
- BORDC/DDF Letter Urging Opposition to Sessions
- 434 Organizations Oppose Confirmation of Jeff Sessions
- Jeff Sessions Threatens Civil Rights, Asian Americans Advancing Justice
- 8 Ways Jeff Sessions Could Change Criminal Justice The Marshall Project
- Jeff Sessions is expected to bring sweeping changes to the Justice Department, Washington Post
- A comprehensive collection of materials on Jeff Sessions and his nomination is available here.