President-elect Donald Trump has been busy filling important positions in his presidential cabinet. Today, it was reported that Trump chose Senator Jeff Sessions to be the new U.S. Attorney General under his administration. Sessions is a far right Republican conservative from Alabama who has been in Trump’s corner from the beginning. In fact, he was the first senator in Congress to officially endorse Trump for president during his campaign back in February.
The Trump transition team had apparently debated on which position they wanted Sessions to fill. They were originally considering Sessions for Secretary of Defense but they eventually decided to make him the Attorney General. After all, Sessions does have experience as a prosecutor so he understands the law better than anybody.
In 1996, Sessions was elected into the Senate and later went on to serve on the Judiciary Committee. He has consistently opposed President Obama on his immigration reform and his proposals to reduce the required minimum prison sentences given to nonviolent offenders. This opposition comes in despite of the proposals getting bipartisan approval.
Sessions is certainly a well-respected member of the Senate, but he does have a controversial past. President Ronald Reagan had nominated him for a federal judgeship in 1986 but the Senate Judiciary Committee rejected him because of racist comments he made in the past about the NAACP being “un-American.” Sessions even said in his testimony in front of the committee that he thought the Ku Klux Klan was fine until he found out they smoked pot. He later said he was just joking, but there probably weren’t too many people laughing.
Now in 2016, these comments are likely going to be talked about again because of Trump’s decision to have him be the U.S. Attorney General. Trump has already been criticized for the racist-toned comments he made about Mexican immigrants and Muslims during his campaign. The appoint of Sessions as Attorney General may not help Trump convince anyone that he is not a racist.