Loretta Lynch is casting herself today to the Senate Judiciary Committee as an apolitical career prosecutor who is a departure from Eric Holder as Attorney General, the New York Times reports. The committee includes some of the Obama administration's fiercest critics in Congress. “I look forward to fostering a new and improved relationship with this committee, the United States Senate, and the entire United States Congress — a relationship based on mutual respect and constitutional balance,” Lynch said in testimony prepared for the confirmation hearing.
Lynch would be the nation's first African-American woman to serve as attorney general. Her allies have sought to differentiate her from Holder, an outspoken liberal voice in the administration who clashed frequently with Republicans who accused him of politicizing the office. Lynch is expected to face tough questioning about the president's decision to ease unilaterally the threat of deportation for millions of unauthorized immigrants. Holder approved the legal justification for that action, enraging some Republicans. GOP committee members include Jeff Sessions of Alabama, Ted Cruz of Texas, Mike Lee of Utah and David Vitter of Louisiana, all of whom have expressed outrage over the president's actions on immigration and his exercise of executive power in general. Vitter has already opposed Lynch's nomination, and Sessions has strong reservations.