Hopefully Thursday’s Senate Judiciary hearing was a preview of fascinating debates to come in the next two years of Republicans running the place. The slate of speakers who discussed the Loretta Lynch nomination for Attorney General included Prof Jonathan Turley, journalist Sharyl Attkisson who investigated the Fast and Furious gun running scandal, Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke and True the Vote founder Catherine Engelbrecht who has been harassed by government agencies for her conservative activism. Links on names go to their written testimony, which was part of a wide-ranging discussion about government power and the limiting principles of the Constitution.You can watch the hearing online, Part One and Part Two.Sheriff Clarke has become a popular guest on Fox News recently, presumably because of his plain-spoken voice for police issues and a ground-level view of law enforcement. At the hearing he critiqued the Holder Justice Department for its “almost hostility toward local law enforcement” both in “public statements made about the profession and policy decisions that treat police officers as adversaries instead of allies in the pursuit of justice.”Senator Ted Cruz discussed prosecutorial discretion (Obama’s excuse for amnesties for five million) with legal scholar Turley, who thought any law could be shut down entirely under such a principle.Senator Jeff Sessions spoke up for the separation of powers which means Congress must grow a spine and defend its rights from the President who would be King.
SESSIONS: I believe Congress has a duty to defend its legitimate constitutional power. It has several powers of its own. One of them is the power of the purse. One of them is the power of confirmations. I don’t see any need for this Congress to confirm somebody, be it the chief law enforcement officer of this nation who is at that table insisting that she intends to execute a policy that’s contrary to law and to what Congress desires and to what the American people desire, and says that someone here unlawfully is as much entitled to a job in this country as somebody who’s here lawfully is just beyond my comprehension. Are we through the looking glass? …The real question is fundamental: What are we going to do to defend our Constitutional heritage? What will this Congress be able to say to subsequent Congresses if we acquiesce to these kind of activities? I think it has permanent ramifications for the relationship of the branches of government.
Regarding the confirmation of Loretta Lynch — who thinks “everyone in this country” has the right to work “regardless of how they came here” — that process will take a little time. Judiciary Chair Charles Grassley appeared on C-SPAN this morning and said she would have to answer written questions over the next week or thereabouts, meaning there is no hurry to vote on her immediately.So there is time to phone your Senators and mention that you think immigration should be legal, controlled and reduced.