Senate Republican leaders are asking Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) to slow down Attorney General-nominee Eric Holder's confirmation process, reports Politico.com. They got a boost from Democratic Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, who, as a former U.S. Attorney and Rhode Island attorney general, commands respect on legal matters. Leahy has proposed hearings as early as Jan. 8 with the goal of confirming Holder on Inauguration day or soon thereafter.
Leahy said that he wanted Holder confirmed with such speed so that he could walk into the Department of Justice after Barack Obama is sworn in and announce, “Okay, justice is back.” Senate Republicans there is still much to be known about Holder's record at the Department of Justice. They say the committee has more than 100 boxes of documents related to Holder stemming from pardon hearings in 2001. Then-Chairman Arlen Specter (R-PA) held hearings on President Clinton's last-minute pardons, some of which – such as the one for fugitive financier Marc Rich — Holder signed off on.