What Sen. Jeff Sessions Will Hear At His AG Confirmation Hearing

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The Jeff Sessions battle ahead. On the eve of his confirmation hearing, we look at the record, and questions for Donald Trump’s pick for attorney general.

Attorney General nominee Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., left, meets with Senate Minority Whip Richard Durbin of Ill., on Capitol Hill, in Washington. (Cliff Owen/AP)
Attorney General nominee, Republican Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, left, meets with Senate Minority Whip Richard Durbin, of Illinois, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (Cliff Owen/AP)

Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions was so distinctly conservative that his own fellow Republicans denied him a Senate committee chair. Now he’s nominated by Donald Trump to be attorney general of the United States. Sessions is unapologetic. On immigration and sentencing, he wants a hard policy. On gay rights and police oversight, he wants the feds to step back. After Eric Holder and Loretta Lynch, the about-face could be stark. This hour On Point, Jeff Sessions heads for his hearing. — Tom Ashbrook


Del Wilber, U.S. Justice Department reporter for the Los Angeles Times. (@DelWilber)

William Yeomans, professor in the American University's Washington College of Law. Former employee of the U.S. Justice Department's Civil Rights Division.

Bernard Simelton, NAACP Alabama State Conference president.

Carrie Severinochief council and policy director for for the Judicial Crisis Network, a conservative legal advocacy organization. (@jcnseverino)

From Tom’s Reading List

Los Angeles Times: The long and complicated road to understanding Jeff Sessions and matters of race — "Jeff Sessions’ uneasy history with race can be traced back to the long, winding roads that cut through the pine forests and farmland in this deep corner of the Deep South. As a boy, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III began each day before dawn, boarding a segregated bus to his all-white school. En route he and his classmates passed the bus ferrying black students in the opposite direction. The day ended when he sat down to dinner each night with his father, an avowed segregationist." Alabama NAACP leader on arrest following sit-in at Sessions' office: 'Is it worth it?' — "Walking toward a Mobile police paddy wagon Tuesday evening, his hands in cuffs, Bernard Simelton said that he momentarily thought to himself, 'Is this worth it?' But the NAACP Alabama conference president still felt sure that the cause merited the sacrifice. It's high time, he said, to ramp up efforts to thwart Jeff Sessions' confirmation as President-elect Donald Trump's attorney general."

New York Times: Jeff Sessions, a Lifelong Outsider, Finds the Inside Track -- "During nearly two decades in the Senate, Jeff Sessions had never endorsed anyone in a presidential primary. But last January, the Alabama Republican, afraid that his party was floundering, sent a five-point questionnaire to all its presidential contenders to determine who might deserve his support. Just one answered: Donald J. Trump."


This program aired on January 9, 2017.


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