Holder’s tenure at Justice already seems like a kind of elaborate joke. He has presided over the Fast and Furious scandal, done his best to enable voter fraud, and practically incited a riot in Ferguson Missouri. The first African-American Attorney General was also the first one to be held in contempt by the House of Representatives—though Eric “My People” Holder can take some comfort in the fact that the Congressional Black Caucus walked off the House floor in protest, displaying their usual solidarity with racial tribalism and political corruption [House holds Holder in contempt, by Alan Silverlieb, CNN, June 29, 2012].
Loretta Lynch seems cut from the same mold. In response to astonishing prosecutorial misconduct in the Duke Lacrosse case, Lynch refused to condemn the behavior of prosecutor Mike Nifong. Instead, “as someone who grew up in Durham,” she ruminated on the “community divide” between mostly white universities and surrounding black neighborhoods. She later observed that when it comes to justice, “I guess where you stand depends on where you sit” and that slogans about being tough on crime have meant for years that “I’m going to be tougher on African Americans.” [AG Nominee Loretta Lynch Had Mixed Reaction to Duke Lacrosse Rape Case, by Peter Flaherty, National Legal and Policy Center, December 4, 2014]
In 2011, Lynch lectured a Russian audience about the corruption of American police officers and, along with Al Sharpton, promised the family of Eric Garner that the federal government was monitoring any state investigation of the incident [Here we go again: AG nominee Loretta Lynch wants to free blacks from the ‘Prison of Racism,’ by M. Catherine Evans, American Thinker, November 9, 2014].
Lynch has participated in conferences by the Justice Department that issue reports about the “pervasive” racism of American society, embraces theories about “disparate impact,” and supports Justice Department lawsuits against states like North Carolina for trying to impose voter ID laws [Is Loretta Lynch Another Eric Holder? Here’s What We Know About Her Troubling Past by Hans von Spakovsky, The Daily Signal, November 13, 2014].
Like Holder, the rationale for everything Loretta Lynch does is, simply, race.
For libertarians concerned about “limited government,” Lynch is a nightmare, defending the National Security Agency’s collection of American phone records as “certainly constitutional, and effective” and (sorry to disappoint left-libertarians) disagreeing with President Obama that marijuana is no more harmful than alcohol [Meet Loretta Lynch – Obama’s Attorney General Nominee Who Might Be Even Worse Than Eric Holder, by Tyler Durden, ZeroHedge, January 30, 2015].
Lynch is also noted for her aggressive use of civil asset forfeiture, which allows the government to confiscate the goods of people who are innocent of any crime and in some cases, aren’t even charged. In a nifty reversal of centuries of English legal tradition, the victim actually has to sue the government to get his own property back, even if it was seized for no reason [Loretta Lynch Has No Problem With Civil Asset Forfeiture – And That’s a Problem, by George Leef, Forbes, November 25, 2014].
At Lynch’s confirmation hearings, Republicans showily denounced outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder and questioned Lynch whether she would operate the same way. Hopeless goober Senator John Cornyn even asked her bluntly if she “was” Eric Holder, to which a smiling Lynch was able to easily respond that no, she was not [Criticism of Holder Dominates Hearing on Loretta Lynch, Attorney General’s Possible Successor, by Carl Hulse and Matt Apuzzo, New York Times, January 28, 2015].
But according to the Justice Department’s own website, Loretta Lynch isn’t just a member of the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee (AGAC), she’s the chair. And Eric Holder picked her out personally as his preferred replacement [Eric Holder wants Brooklyn U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch as new Attorney General, by Dan Friedman and John Marzulli, New York Daily News, October 31, 2014].
Yet few of the Republicans seemed inclined to press Lynch, who largely sailed through the hearings with open statements of approval from some Republicans, especially Orrin Hatch and Lindsey Graham, Instead, Republicans limited their criticism to Obama and Holder’s past actions.
Heather Digby Parton of the unintentional parodic site Salon taunted conservatives that “Lynch schools the wingnuts: How the right tried – and failed – to wound Obama’s AG nominee” [January 30, 2015]. But, as she observes, the GOP didn’t attack Lynch so much as try to “relitigate moldy pseudo-scandals.” While scandals like the IRS persecution of conservatives are hardly “pseudo-scandals,” Parton is right that Republicans attacked Obama and Holder using Fox News talking points rather than actually trying to find out what Lynch would do as Attorney General.
As usual, it was left to Senator Jeff Sessions to be the adult in the room. His questions uncovered the smoking gun, a bald statement by Lynch that “I believe the right and the obligation to work is one that is shared by everyone in this country, regardless of how they came here.”
Not surprisingly, Sessions has declared his opposition. Senator Ted Cruz has also suggested that Majority Leader Mitch McConnellf should not even allow Lynch to come to the floor for a vote because of her “dangerous” immigration views [Cruz Says Fate of ‘dangerous’ Lynch Up to McConnell, by Niels Lesniewski, Roll Call, January 28, 2015].
Republicans therefore have a compelling reason to vote against Lynch because of her stated refusal to enforce immigration laws and her defense of the President’s clearly unconstitutional actions. Even National Review (!) says that conservatives should oppose Lynch’s appointment because it needs to demonstrate that “they are unwilling to participate in the neutering of their own constitutional powers,” especially “in… the chamber’s most important vote related to the president’s executive amnesty since its proclamation” [Resist the Lynch Nomination, The Editors, National Review, January 29, 2015].
Yet there are already reports that the Republican leadership will not block Lynch [Sorry, Conservatives: Republican Leadership Isn’t Going to Black Loretta Lynch, by John Stanton, Buzzfeed, January 28, 2015]. And even with a slew of reasons to vote against her, and Lynch’s utterly damning immigration admission, the consensus is developing that Lynch will be confirmed simply because she is not Eric Holder. [An Attorney General by Any Other Name, by Russell Berman, The Atlantic, January 28, 2015]
For immigration patriots, the Lynch vote is the critical vote that will show whether the Republican Party leadership is serious about opposing President Obama’s unconstitutional Executive Amnesty—if only on procedural grounds. This is a far easier task to accomplish than reversing Obama’s actions through legislation, or even impeaching him.
If the Republicans can’t even be trusted to oppose something that they themselves say is unconstitutional, what is the point of the Republican Congress? Indeed, what is the point of participation in the political process?
The key actor, of course, is the grassroots. Amnesty has also been thought of as a sure thing in the past but the American people have risen up to defeat it again and again.
Today, Lynch is a stand-in for Amnesty. And whether her nomination is blocked will be an indicator of whether the historic American nation has a future.
James Kirkpatrick [Email him] is a Beltway veteran and a refugee from Conservatism Inc.