On Monday evening, President Donald Trump fired acting Attorney General Sally Yates after she refused to comply with his executive orders on immigration and refugees. If you're thinking that...
· Presidents Trump, Bush and Clinton all did so at the beginning of their time in office, and Eric Holder, President Obama’s attorney general in May of 2009, announced plans to dismiss a “batch”...
· Probably not many in people in Washington remember that Harry Truman once fired an attorney general for, in his view, suborning corruption.
Jeff Sessions, U.S. Attorney General, requested the resignations of 46 U.S. Attorneys on March 10, 2017. On March 10, 2017, Jeff Sessions, who was appointed United States Attorney General by President Donald Trump, requested the resignations of 46 United States Attorneys. Some resignations were declined by Sessions or Trump.
The President of the United States has the authority to appoint U.S. Attorneys, with the consent of the United States Senate, and the President may remove U.S. Attorneys from office. In the event of a vacancy, the United States Attorney General is authorized to appoint an interim U.S. Attorney.
Technically, no sitting President has ever fired an Attorney General they nominated to office with Senate approval. But President Trump clearly has the power to remove Sessions, based on the Constitution and past legal decisions. And most importantly, he can ask for his resignation.
AppointmentsOfficeNomineeAssumed officeAttorney GeneralWilliam BarrFebruary 14, 2019 (Confirmed February 14, 2019, 54–45)Deputy Attorney GeneralJeffrey A. RosenMay 22, 2019 (Confirmed May 16, 2019, 52–45)Associate Attorney GeneralClaire McCusker MurrayMay 14, 2019Solicitor GeneralJeff WallJuly 3, 202036 more rows
Eric Himpton Holder Jr. (born January 21, 1951) is an American lawyer who served as the 82nd Attorney General of the United States from 2009 to 2015. Holder, serving in the administration of President Barack Obama, was the first African American to hold the position of U.S. attorney general.
Attorneys General. While impeachment proceedings against cabinet secretaries is an exceedingly rare event, no office has provoked the ire of the House of Representatives than that of Attorney General. During the first fifth of the 21st century, no less than three Attorneys General have been subjected to the process.
However, the following U.S. Supreme Court cases clarified the president's sole removal authority: Myers v. United States (1926): The court held that the power to remove appointed officials, with the exception of federal judges, rests solely with the president and does not require congressional approval.
Matthew WhitakerPreceded byJeff SessionsSucceeded byWilliam BarrChief of Staff to the United States Attorney GeneralIn office September 22, 2017 – November 7, 201822 more rows
197719832000GTE2008Verizon Communications, Verizon CommunicationsWilliam Barr/Left dates
Merrick GarlandUnited States / Attorney general
Hillary Clinton served as the 67th United States Secretary of State, under President Barack Obama, from 2009 to 2013, overseeing the department that conducted the foreign policy of Barack Obama.
60 years (August 4, 1961)Barack Obama / Age
Stephen HargroveLoretta Lynch / Spouse (m. 2007)
In practice, district attorneys, who prosecute the bulk of criminal cases in the United States, answer to no one. The state attorney general is the highest law enforcement officer in state government and often has the power to review complaints about unethical and illegal conduct on the part of district attorneys.
No. Federal government agencies cannot be sued in Small Claims Court, but you can file a Claim For Damages (other DOJ forms).
Attorney General GarlandMeet the Attorney General As the nation's chief law enforcement officer, Attorney General Garland leads the Justice Department's 115,000 employees, who work across the United States and in more than 50 countries worldwide.
Merrick GarlandU.S. Department of JusticeDepartment of JusticeSecretary:Merrick GarlandYear created:1789Official website:Justice.gov1 more row
White House spokesman Scott Stanzel stated that some of the emails that had involved official correspondence relating to the firing of attorneys may have been lost because they were conducted on Republican party accounts and not stored properly. "Some official e-mails have potentially been lost and that is a mistake the White House is aggressively working to correct." said Stanzel, a White House spokesman. Stonzel said that they could not rule out the possibility that some of the lost emails dealt with the firing of U.S. attorneys. For example, J. Scott Jennings, an aide to Karl Rove communicated with Justice Department officials "concerning the appointment of Tim Griffin, a former Rove aide, as U.S. attorney in Little Rock, according to e-mails released in March, 2007. For that exchange, Jennings, although working at the White House, used an e-mail account registered to the Republican National Committee, where Griffin had worked as a political opposition researcher."
Allegations were that some of the attorneys were targeted for dismissal to impede investigations of Republican politicians or that some were targeted for their failure to initiate investigations that would damage Democratic politicians or hamper Democratic-leaning voters.
A subsequent report by the Justice Department Inspector General in October 2008 found that the process used to fire the first seven attorneys and two others dismissed around the same time was "arbitrary", "fundamentally flawed" and "raised doubts about the integrity of Department prosecution decisions".
Officials who resigned. Alberto Gonzales, United States Attorney General, former White House Counsel. Kyle Sampson, Chief of Staff to the Attorney General. Michael A. Battle, Director of the Executive Office for U.S. Attorneys. Michael Elston, Chief of Staff to the Deputy Attorney General.
The change in the law undermined the confirmation authority of the Senate and gave the Attorney General greater appointment powers than the President, since the President's U.S. Attorney appointees are required to be confirmed by the Senate and those of the Attorney General did not require confirmation.
Attorney General Gonzales, in a confidential memorandum dated March 1, 2006, delegated authority to senior DOJ staff Monica Goodling and Kyle Sampson to hire and dismiss political appointees and some civil service positions.
On September 29, 2008 the Justice Department's Inspector General (IG) released a report on the matter that found most of the firings were politically motivated and improper.
That decision-making role fell previously to Stuart Gerson, who served as acting attorney general during the early months of the Clinton administration after his role as assistant attorney general for the civil division during President George H.W. Bush’s time in office.
In 2007, Biden publicly called for then-AG Alberto Gonzales to resign in part over the decision to fire eight U.S. attorneys amid allegations of Republican meddling in some of their investigations. Several GOP senators said they also had lost faith in Gonzales, and he eventually stepped down.
President-elect Joe Biden has vowed to restore integrity to the Justice Department and allow it to run independently, free of White House meddling. But if the experience of his predecessors is any guide, that lofty pledge is easier said than done – even if a president’s own son were not the subject of a federal investigation.
The president denounced Barr’s statement that he hadn’t seen enough evidence of election fraud thus far to overturn the presidential outcome. Trump also expressed displeasure with Barr’s decision to keep the Hunter Biden investigation, which began in 2018, under wraps throughout the 2020 campaign. With nearly five decades ...
Biden underscored the pledge: “I guarantee you that that’s how it will be run.”. As a senator, Biden was particularly critical of another Republican president, George W. Bush, and what he regarded as the politicization of the attorney general position.
In his interview with Wallace, Biden defended his call for Gonzales to step down, arguing that the U.S. attorney firings were politically motivated. Biden added that he believed Gonzales had become a “creature of the president, not the attorney for the people as well as representing the president.”.
Biden added that he believed Gonzales had become a “creature of the president, not the attorney for the people as well as representing the president.”. And he went so far as to say the Bush White House even exceeded the Nixon administration in installing loyalists in the U.S. attorney jobs.
Attorney General J. Howard McGrath, a former governor of and senator from Rhode Island, appointed Newbold Morris as a special assistant attorney general in the Justice Department to investigate corruption.
The attorney general serves at the pleasure of the president, and the president can determine that a prosecution would undermine the national security—a subject on which he has a wider perspective and a greater responsibility than the attorney general—and order that it not go forward.
National Review pointed out that Janet Reno began her tenure as President Bill Clinton 's attorney general in March 1993 by firing U.S. attorneys for 93 of the 94 federal districts, this being more than twice as many as Trump attorney general Sessions fired on Friday.
President Donald Trump declined to accept the resignations of Dana Boente (left) and Rod Rosenstein (right). Trump declined to accept the resignations of Boente (Eastern District of Virginia), who was serving as Acting Deputy Attorney General, and Rosenstein (District of Maryland), whom Trump had selected to become Deputy Attorney General.
Trump's Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, Tom Price, traded stocks of health-related corporations during the time period when Price was working on crafting the legislation that would affect those firms.
Amid the Watergate investigation, Richard Nixon asked attorney general Elliot Richardson and his deputy, William Ruckelshaus, to fire special prosecutor Archibald Cox, who months earlier had subpoenaed Nixon’s Oval Office recordings. Both lawyers opted to resign instead. In the wake of what was dubbed the Saturday Night Massacre, the President’s approval rating dropped to 27 percent. Four decades on, the presidential oustings are still the most infamous.
The President caught W’s eye during the walk-and-talk, and the son responded with an affirming wink. 6. Biggest Historical Impact. Abraham Lincoln fired General George McClellan, who wrote to his wife: “There never was a truer epithet applied to a certain individual than that of the ‘Gorilla.’.
Before he was the President, Donald Trump was most famous for booting people on TV—a habit that has proved hard to quit. So far, acting attorney general Sally Yates, national-security adviser Michael Flynn, and FBI director James Comey (above) have all found themselves on the receiving end of the onetime TV host’s catchphrase, “You’re fired.”.
Amid the Watergate investigation, Richard Nixon asked attorney general Elliot Richardson and his deputy, William Ruckelshaus, to fire special prosecutor Archibald Cox, who months earlier had subpoenaed Nixon’s Oval Office recordings. Both lawyers opted to resign instead. In the wake of what was dubbed the Saturday Night Massacre, ...
Biggest Turnaround. On April 11, 1951, Harry S. Truman replaced popular general Douglas MacArthur with General Matthew Ridgway over what Truman called MacArthur’s “rank insubordination” during the Korean War. Enjoying a hero’s welcome back home, MacArthur was invited to speak to a joint session of Congress.
In 1981 , Ronald Reagan fired 11,400 members of the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization 48 hours after offering them an ultimatum: end their illegal strike or forfeit their jobs. The workers, seeking better pay and working conditions, were banned from federal employment.
Photo by Life Images Collection/Getty Images. 5. Breakthrough Performance. George W. Bush convinced his President-dad to let him do the dirty work when it was time to fire chief of staff John Sununu in 1991.
Congress was infuriated by Nixon’s act, which they regarded as a gross abuse of presidential power, and the tide of public opinion seemed to turn against him, with a large number of telegrams flooding into the White House and Congress expressing disgust.
Those opposed to Mr Trump have been quick to draw parallels between Mr Richardon and Ms Yates, who was appointed by Barack Obama and serving as the Acting Attorney General until Mr Trump has his own pick approved.
Democat congressman John Conyers was one of many to criticise her unceremonious dismissal, saying: “If dedicated government officials deem [Trump's] directives to be unlawful and unconstitutional, he will simply fire them as if Government is a reality show.”
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The acting Attorney General, Sally Yates, has betrayed the Department of Justice by refusing to enforce a legal order designed to protect the citizens of the United States. This order was approved as to form and legality by the Department of Justice Office of Legal Counsel.
Spicer’s statement said Yates had “betrayed the Department of Justice” by refusing to defend Trump’s order. The statement added that Yates , a career prosecutor whom Trump named as acting attorney general, is “weak on borders and very weak on illegal immigration.”. Ryan J. Reilly / The Huffington Post.
Trump’s administration made the decision to appoint Yates as acting attorney general as well as to allow top federal prosecutors around the country who had been appointed by Obama to continue serving. Not long after the White House’s announcement, there was a flurry of activity on the fourth floor of the Justice Department building, ...
Some high-profile US attorneys who had not resigned ahead of Biden's inauguration included US Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio David DeVillers, Utah US Attorney John Huber and Pittsburgh US Attorney Scott Brady.
During his second time as the US attorney, Huber was tasked by Sessions to reexamine a previous Justice Department investigation of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton's business dealings and the Clinton Foundation.
A number of acting US attorneys who aren't Senate confirmed or who were appointed by the courts are expected to remain in their posts until a Biden appointee is approved by the Senate, prosecutors were told Tuesday.
Instead, the public took it as a sign the administration was failing and desperate. Alexander Haig (CQ Roll Call Archive Photo) Ronald Reagan. Alexander Haig, Secretary of State. When Haig announced he was in charge following the assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, a few feathers were ruffled.
Harry S. Truman. Douglas MacArthur, Commander of U.N. forces in Korea. Truman fired MacArthur for insubordination after privately pushing for a wider war with China and publicly criticizing Truman. After being dismissed, he was invited to address a joint session of Congress.
Dulles took the fall for the botched Bay of Pigs operation. Lyndon B. Johnson. Robert McNamara, Secretary of Defense. After presiding over the escalation of the Vietnam war, McNamara recommended a negotiated peace and withdrawal in 1967.
When Haig announced he was in charge following the assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, a few feathers were ruffled. He lasted just a year longer. Anne Gorsuch, EPA Administrator.
Lauro Cavazos, Secretary of Education. The first Hispanic Cabinet member was told to resign after he surprised the White House with a new policy that would block federal aid to colleges that offered scholarships designed for minority students. Bill Clinton. William Sessions, FBI Director.
Bill Clinton. William Sessions, FBI Director. In President Bill Clinton ’ s first year in office, he fired the FBI director who had been criticized for his mismanagement of the agency and for spending taxpayer money for his own benefit. He replaced Sessions with Louis Freeh, whose appointment Clinton later regretted.
Les Aspin , Secretary of Defense. After the massacre of the Black Hawk unit in Somalia, the former McNamara protege and chairman of the House Armed Services Committee twice offered Clinton his resignation. On the second occasion, Clinton accepted. Joycelyn Elders, Surgeon General.
The initial reaction was from the senators of the affected states. In a letter to Gonzales on January 9, 2007, Senators Feinstein (D, California) and Leahy (D, Vermont; Chair of the Committee) of the Senate Judiciary Committee expressed concern that the confirmation process for U.S. attorneys would be bypassed, and on January 11, they, together with Senator Pryor (D, Arkansas), introduced legislation "to prevent circumvention of the Senate's constitutional prerogative to con…
By tradition, all U.S. Attorneys are asked to resign at the start of a new administration. The new President may elect to keep or remove any U.S. Attorney. They are traditionally replaced collectively only at the start of a new White House administration. U.S. Attorneys hold a political office, in which the President nominates candidates to office and the Senate confirms, and consequently, they serve at the pleasure of the President. When a new President is from a differ…
White House spokesman Scott Stanzel stated that some of the emails that had involved official correspondence relating to the firing of attorneys may have been lost because they were conducted on Republican party accounts and not stored properly. "Some official e-mails have potentially been lost and that is a mistake the White House is aggressively working to correct." said Stanzel, a White House spokesman. Stonzel said that they could not rule out the possibility …
• 2017 dismissal of U.S. attorneys
• List of federal political scandals in the United States
• Don Siegelman
• Cyril Wecht
1. ^ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
2. ^ "Although Bush and President Bill Clinton each dismissed nearly all U.S. attorneys upon taking office, legal experts and former prosecutors say the firing of a large number of prosecutors in the middle of a term appears to be unprecedented and threatens the independence of prosecutors." Gonzales: 'Mistakes Were Made' The Washington Post, March 14, 2007