The White House has narrowed its search for the second-ranking position at the Justice Department to a handful of veteran law enforcement officials, says the New York Times. Timothy Flanigan, the previous nominee, dropped out after attacks on his credentials and his corporate ties. The front-runner is considered to be Paul J. McNulty, a politically astute prosecutor who is the U.S. Attorney in Alexandria, Va. McNulty’s office has prosecuted many of the administration’s most publicized terrorism cases against suspects like Zacarias Moussaoui, John Walker Lindh, and Abu Ali.
McNulty and a handful of other candidates for the job all have one major line on their résumés that Flanigan lacked: experience as a criminal prosecutor. Others said to be under consideration are Johnny Sutton, the U.S. Attorney in western Texas, and Karen Tandy, a former prosecutor who leads the Drug Enforcement Administration. Other prosecutors considered possible candidates include Mary Beth Buchanan, the U.S. Attorney in Pittsburgh, and William Mercer, the U.S. Attorney in Montana. The deputy attorney general position has been vacant for two months, since the departure of James Comey.