During day two of the hearing for President-elect Donald Trump‘s pick for Attorney General, Democratic Senator Cory Booker made an unprecedented move when he testified against fellow Senator Jeff Sessions.
This made Booker the first sitting senator to testify against his colleague at a confirmation in front of the Judiciary Committee. The New Jersey Senator said that despite outside dissatisfaction, “In the choice of standing with Senate norms or standing up for what my conscience tells me is best for our country, I will always choose my conscience and country.”
Following the hearing, Booker again addressed the condemnation he’s received, saying, “I’ve been criticized, but if you’re not being criticized in America, you’re probably not doing a lot of good things.”
Also joining Booker in testifying against the nation’s next potential attorney general are Civil Rights Leader John Lewis and Congressional Black Caucus Chairman Rep. Cedric Richmond.
During the hearing, a photograph was dispersed of Sessions alongside various Black Caucus members during the 2015 commemoration of the Voting Rights Act in Selma, Alabama.
Leader McConnell's office just sent around this photo of Jeff Sessions and John Lewis in Selma. pic.twitter.com/gFY6Sq3JGx— Niels Lesniewski (@nielslesniewski) January 11, 2017
However, Lewis said that Sessions never “tasted the bitter fruits of segregation,” as “we had to sit in, we had to stand in, we had to march.” He continued by saying that the top law enforcement official needs to be someone to “look out for all of us, not some of us.”
Most recently, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer announced that he too opposes Sessions’ nomination and vows to vote against him. According to The New York Daily News, Schumer said he doesn’t believe Sessions has the capability to ensure justice for all or hold the president accountable.
“After reviewing his record and giving careful consideration to his answers during the hearing, I am not confident in Senator Sessions’ ability to be a defender of the rights of all Americans or to serve as an independent check on the incoming administration,” Schumer said in a statement.