It should come as no surprise to anyone who follows these things that President-elect Barack Obama today chose as the new attorney general his campaign co-chair
It should come as no surprise to anyone who follows these things that President-elect Barack Obama today chose as the new attorney general his campaign co-chair Eric Holder, a former deputy AG in the Clinton Administration and partner at the Washington law firm Covington & Burling. The thing about Holder is that like Obama, he’s hard to pin down; he’s no ideologue. He’s got the public-service and law-and-order credentials of being the former US Attorney for the District of Columbia, and a former deputy Attorney General. Notably, he was the first African American in both those positions.
Then at the law firm, he polished his corporate credentials: Holder represented major companies like the pharmaceutical giant Merck, the National Football League, MBNA and Chiquita against various charges of fraud, discrimination and misconduct. (That ought to protect him against any attacks from the right that he’s too much of a lefty, although it won’t protect him from attacks from the left that he’s not liberal enough.)
Perhaps intentionally, Holder doesn’t seem to have taken on any controversial or high-profile pro bono cases as a private lawyer, perhaps anticipating that could cause him trouble if he returned to the political arena. Other Covington lawyers have represented large groups of detainees at the Guantanamo Bay prison in habeas corpus proceedings that directly challenged the government.
Of course, as Spencer notes in his post, Holder has attacked the government’s policy on Guantanamo and torture — a Democratic, yet hardly risky, position to take.
Holder also worked hard on Obama’s campaign, and appears likely to be a loyalist. (For more on their relationship and Holder’s personal background, see this profile in The American Lawyer.)
All this adds up to the 57-year-old Holder as a pretty safe choice for Obama. If even-handedness, predictability and loyalty are what president-elect was looking for in his new attorney general, he seems to have found it in Eric Holder.
EPA Administrator Addresses Concerns About Oil Spill Waste Management
At a hearing of the national oil spill commission today, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson addressed concerns about waste disposal from
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E-Verify Mandate Begins Today
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EPA administrator fires back at critics in op-ed
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EPA administrator says federal nutrient criteria is a ‘myth’
In testimony given late last week, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson said that false accusations about her agency’s numeric nutrient criteria to govern Florida waterways are proving to be a detriment to their implementation. # Testifying before the House Agriculture Committee, Jackson said her agency’s work was often “mischaracterized” and addressed several myths surrounding its work
EPA and California Near Deal on Fuel Efficiency Standards
Two weeks ago, the Obama administration raised fuel efficiency standards by an average of two miles per gallon -- a modest change that disappointed some
EPA: BP Has 24 Hours to Find a Less Toxic Chemical Dispersant
Thought the massive quantities of oil pouring into the Gulf of Mexico were the only major threat to the country’s southeast coastal waters right now? Think
EPA announces hold on nutrient standards if Florida can come up with own criteria
The EPA announced today that it is now prepared to withdraw a portion of its proposed numeric nutrient criteria (a set of standards governing water pollution in inland waters) and delay the portion related to estuarine waters, to allow the state Department of Environmental Protection to develop its own criteria. # From a statement released by the EPA earlier today: # EPA recognizes that states have the primary role in establishing and implementing water quality standards for their waters. Therefore, EPA is prepared to withdraw the federal inland standards and delay the estuarine standards if FDEP adopts, and EPA approves, their own protective and scientifically sound numeric standards
EPA Chief Overruled Calif. Waiver, Too
The Washington Post reported in March that EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson was overruled by the White House in setting an ozone standard. Now, documents