'He Has Had to Withstand Some Very Painful Attacks on His Character, Both Years Ago and Again Today'
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U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump's nominee to become attorney general, minutes into his confirmation hearing received the overwhelming support from one Republican Senator who Democrats were hoping would vote against him. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME), who has a reputation of being willing to break ranks and cross the aisle at times, told members of the Judiciary Committee that Senator Sessions is not "motived by racial animus." Stunningly, she lamented that Sessions has had to suffer allegations of racism. Of course, his racism is what derailed his appointment to the federal bench in the 1980's, but Collins is upset that Sessions has had to account for that.
"These are not the actions of an individual who is motived by racial animus," Sen. Collins, after detailing some of his accomplishments, told the committee.
"In spite of this record Senator Sessions' nomination has generated controversy," Collins acknowledged. "He has had to withstand some very painful attacks on his character, both years ago and again today, with little or no acknowledgement of his accomlishments and actions or the responses he has made to the accusations against him."
Sessions has a long history of racist remarks and actions, which he denies. He has consistently voted against minorities and women, including against the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, against the Violence Against Women Act, and for a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.