Senate Confirms String of US Attorney, Marshal Nominees After Cotton Lifts Hold

Senate Confirms String of US Attorney, Marshal Nominees After Cotton Lifts Hold
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) speaks during a hearing to examine United States Special Operations Command and United States Cyber Command in review of the Defense Authorization Request for fiscal year 2022 and the Future Years Defense Program, on Capitol Hill in Washington, on March 25, 2021. (Andrew Harnik/Pool/Getty Images)
Joseph Lord

The Senate on April 27 voted to confirm a string of nominees to the U.S. Marshals Service and U.S. Attorney offices after Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) lifted holds on their consideration.

Cotton’s holds, citing concerns over the participation of some nominees in the 2020 Black Lives Matter protests and riots in Portland, Oregon and demanding answers from the Department of Justice.

After the holds were lifted, the nominees were confirmed by a simple voice vote.

“These nominations are very important to our states,” Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) said in a speech requesting that Cotton lift the holds.

Cotton acceded to Brown’s request to bring the nominees to the floor, saying he would not object to their consideration.

In a speech on the Senate floor he explained his reasoning for changing course.

Though Cotton said he still wants answers from the Justice Department over the nominees’ participation in the 2020 protests, he has accepted that there is little chance of this happening under the current Democrat-ruled Congress and executive branch.

“The facts will come out one way or another,” Cotton said. “If not this year, it will happen next year.”

“Now that I’m confident the [DOJ] will receive the oversight that it deserves in this matter, I will no longer object to these nominees,” Cotton said. “I will withdraw my objection to the confirmation of today’s nominees.”

Following the vote to confirm the nominees, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) applauded the outcome but blasted what he described as GOP “obstruction.”

“It’s a good thing that our Republican colleagues finally stopped their indefensible obstruction of qualified U.S. Attorneys and Marshals. These nominees are vital to keeping our communities safe and secure and they should never have been held up for leverage in partisan games,” Schumer said.

“After months of waiting, communities in Georgia and Ohio and Nevada and Minnesota and New Hampshire and other states are finally getting the security they need with confirmed U.S. Attorneys. So I’m very glad that this ... finally, finally happened,” Schumer continued.

“It took too long but now it’s done,” he added.

The confirmations of the important legal positions come as cities across the United States have faced a sharp increase in violent crime, with some cities on track to reach or surpass previous record highs for murder.