October 30th, 2007
01:30 PM ET
11 years ago

Clinton adds name to Mukasey opposition

Clinton said Tuesday she is against Mukasey's confirmation.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-New York, said Tuesday she will not support Judge Michael Mukasey's confirmation to be then next attorney general, citing the judge's "continued unwillingness to clearly state his views on torture and unchecked Executive power."

"When we leave any doubt about our nation’s policy on torture, we send a terrible message to the rest of the world," Clinton said in a statement issued by her Senate office. "Judge Mukasey has been given ample opportunity – both at his confirmation hearings and in his subsequent submission to the Judiciary Committee – to clarify his answers and categorically oppose the unacceptable interrogation techniques employed by this Administration."

Earlier Tuesday, Illinois Sen. Barack Obama, Clinton's chief rival for the Democratic nomination, also said he was against Mukasey's confirmation.

As for the other Democratic Senate presidential candidates, Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd has said he is against the confirmation and Delaware Sen. Joe Biden said in a statement he will not vote for Mukasey unless he states "clearly that waterboarding constitutes torture and that the president is bound by the law."

Meanwhile, former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards released a statement Tuesday calling on the Senate to deny Mukasey's confirmation.

"The credibility of Justice Department has been badly tarnished, and it is now clear that Mukasey is not the man to restore it," Edwards said.

Responding to the candidates' opposition of Mukasey, Maria Comella, a spokeswoman for Rudy Giuliani's presidential campaign, said, "You know the Democratic presidential nominees have hit a new low when Chuck Schumer isn't even on their side.

"Judge Mukasey is an honorable, well-qualified nominee for attorney general who doesn't deserve to have his nomination politicized and used for personal gain by the likes of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama," she added.

Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-New York, was an early supporter of Mukasey's nomination though he has said he is waiting for Mukasey's written answers on waterboarding before he decides whether to vote for the judge's confirmation.

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (44 Responses)
  1. Jesse, Burnsville, MN

    Do any of you Clinton supporters know what a caucus is? You better learn quickly, because that is what they use in Iowa. At a caucus, you have the opportunity to ultimately place your vote with your second choice for the candidacy. I can tell you right now that the Obama and Edwards supporters are pretty much aligned. They would rather have one or the other as the candidate for President, not Hillary. Hence, there will be some horse-trading and Hillary will end up getting beat pretty handily.

    October 30, 2007 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  2. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    Another deal-breaker is if Mukasey won't permit the US Attorney for DC to enforce Congressional contempt citations. It's called obstruction of justice.

    October 30, 2007 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  3. Ben


    Hillary Clinton voted for a war that has killed almost 4000 U.S. citizens.

    25,000 more are wounded in inconceivable, life changing ways.

    She won't apologize or admit she was wrong.

    And now she wants to take us into Iran.

    In my mind, the last thing she deserves is respect. Try losing a loved one and see how you feel.

    October 30, 2007 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  4. Dave, Cheverly, MD

    Mukasey is doing the same as Hillary, Riding the fence on important issues. Not committing to state which side of an issue they’re on.
    I truly believe she does NOT know what to do on these important issues. She is a FOLLOWER and we need a LEADER.

    Bill Clinton is not promised to always be there to give her guidance and backup. Haven’t we learned that when we choose a President we get that PERSON for 4 LONG Years!

    Are we as a voting Nation to use the term SOS (Stuck On Stupid) when it comes to making up our minds to choose a President? A form of insanity is choosing to do the wrong thing time and time again and expecting a different result.

    October 30, 2007 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  5. ThatGuy


    When has Clinton ever lead?

    She is biggest whiner on stage whenever the 'raise your hand' questions come up. "I won't answer hypotheticals" Wake up Hill everything is hypothetical until it really happens.

    October 30, 2007 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  6. David, Dallas Tx

    LPX303 said: People positioned themselves early in order to get a jump on the others. Don't tell me that Obama doesn't posture himself. And he should. But, see it for what it is. I like Obama. But if you think Clinton is looking to Obama for leadership and is waiting for the others, go look at the tapes of the "raise your hands if" questions during the debates. Sen. Clinton doesn't look around at the others for their answers. In addition, she usually answers more quickly than anyone.

    She may raise her hands quickly during debate; it gives the impression of decisiveness and honestly. Good for her.

    However, outside of debate she does in fact usually wait to see how others' statements are received, and then advocates the stances that are received well.

    If you disagree with me, find a statement of significance she's made that didn't follow someone else's. Just one.

    I agree that Obama is posturing. It's what you do when you're a candidate. Just don't make the mistake of thinking Hillary doesn't do the same, albeit in more of a follow-the-leader fashion.

    No disrespect to the lady intended. She's my second pick for president.

    October 30, 2007 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  7. Eric, from THE Republic of Texas

    "The Geneva convention prohibits torture and it protects our troops whose "butts" I prefer the word lives are on the line. Every time we break the Geneva convention that puts the lives of our troops at risk."

    Dear Coach Haughton,
    If you honestly believe that cave-dwelling suicide bombers, who have no qualms slaying women and children with nail-and-bolt-packed bombs, follow the Geneva Conventions regarding captured/kidnapped Coalition Troops, then I'd venture that you're smoking the dope.

    No, terrorists have a special set of "Geneva Conventions" reserved for coalition troops. We call them "decapitation and mutilation."

    See, THOSE people REALLY torture. We merely "inconvenience" captured terrorists.

    Wearing underwear on your head and being kept awake for hours on end while being force-fed high-volume Britney Spears is merely inconvenient, not torture. Having your head sawed off with a terrorist's dull knife, while you're bound and blindfolded... now that is called torture.

    Let's recap, shall we? Having your head handed to you... torture. Excessive Britney Spears and underwear "helmets"... inconvenient.

    Hell, I've heard fraternity hazing stories that are far worse than the way the U.S. "tortures."

    And besides, the Geneva Conventions apply only to uniformed members of a nation's official standing military.

    The protections of the Geneva Conventions explicitly do NOT apply to vicious rogue thugs from Turd World Nations.

    October 30, 2007 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  8. Conan and proud of it

    Call me a barbarian – so be it, but the US Foreign Policy to States, Regimes, Terrorists, etc should be simple:

    Good will be met with Good. Evil will be met with retribution. We do not judge those that choose to kill us – rather we only wish to allow God the opportunity to judge you sooner than later.

    To the world: You decide which category you want to live or die in. Seek to harm or kill one or many of our citizens – prepare to meet your god.

    October 30, 2007 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  9. Coach Haughton NH

    Posted By Eric, from THE Republic of Texas : October 30, 2007 6:03 pm

    Did you ignore the portion that said TORTURE DOES NOT WORK ANYWAY!

    And we SIGNED THE GENEVA CONVENTION. Its not for us to interpret. Its international law. And torture is not helping us anyway. What is your rationale?

    October 30, 2007 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  10. Jim

    FOLLOWING OBAMA ONCE AGAIN! Where's the leadership?!

    October 30, 2007 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  11. Brian, Orlando, Florida

    Its sad that Republicans seem to believe that Americans are immune from any laws. This great country of ours is turning into this generation's Nazi Germany.

    Free the World!

    October 30, 2007 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  12. TRM

    So the man's entire resume comes down to one stupid question huh? This should be a good example of how this dingbat socialist would run the country. Instead of looking at the whole and then making a decision, she finds a hot button that appeals to the feel good left and harps on it. This insane woman does nothing unless it benefits her and her only.


    October 30, 2007 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  13. Bill , Covington,LA

    Hillary who used to visit wirh Ealinor Roosevelt, Hillary who reminds me of Leona Helmsley, Hillary who NEVER gives a straight answer to anything, wont vute for the Mukasey nomination for AG because of his "continued unwillingness to clearly state his views"...What a crock from the likes of her.

    October 30, 2007 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  14. ronnie knoxville, tn

    if she were President, she wouldn't be worrying about them conferring more power onto her. You can bet on that.

    October 30, 2007 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  15. McEmtol, College Park, MD

    The kind of posts we see in the ticker are just a reflection of people who blindly and sheepishly follow a candidate without reason. They attack without thinking and will support and justify even a gaffe made by their prefered candidate. I am not an american...i am just amused. Before the news of senator Clinton's position was posted most of her supporters criticised Senator Obama for his stance and some calling him naive....I only became very excited to see what kind of posts i will see after Senator Clinton made her position known. My message is...you've got a mind, you are a person....just reason it out before you post....Your prefered candidate will not always be right. Positive criticism will rather help your prefered candidate than singing his/her praise and justifying obvious wrongs. Thats what psycophants do....you can do better guys...

    October 30, 2007 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  16. Ron, Connecticut

    Plenty of Senate news as well today: Democrats got a new, more competitive candidate in North Carolina who can hopefully mount a strong challenge to Dole, and a new poll from New Mexico has Chavez and Wilson in a tie.

    October 30, 2007 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  17. Terry, El Paso, TX

    "The protections of the Geneva Conventions explicitly do NOT apply to vicious rogue thugs from Turd World Nations." – Posted By Eric, from THE Republic of Texas

    I ask all of you to excuse my fellow Texan. It is not his fault that Texas public schools are as bad as they are. I myself graduated from a backwater Texas university, but my education was gooder than most Texan's.

    Abraham Lincoln said, "Whenever I hear any one arguing for slavery I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally." I feel the same way when I hear someone defending torture as a mere inconvenience.

    Eric's defense of torture is based on his assertion that terrorists are worse than we are, and he is certainly right about that. Americans do not make war on the unarmed and helpless civilian populations. We have taken extreme and unprecedented precautions to protect civilians and national infrastructure.

    I personally don't feel any compassion for Islamic terrorists and I think the world would be a better place without them. "Kill all killers" is my motto.

    What troubles me is that we don't know who is in Guantanamo, or in prison in Iraq, or in the hundred other hellholes that our government doesn't tell us about. I am certain that a large percentage of them are innocent men have been "disappeared" by agents of our federal government. Why do I think there might be innocent men being held by our government? Because our prisons contain a good percentage of innocent men and women who were given attorneys, jury trials, a judge, and the right to appeal. Every day we read of innocent men being released after years in the slammer, despite all the precautions mandated by our justice system. Without all those protections, can we really believe that the innocent were not scooped up with the guilty?

    Now guys like Eric might say, "Who cares. If 20 innocent men have to be tortured along with 80 guilty ones, well that's the way the cookie crumbles." Let me be the first to volunteer Eric as one of the 20.

    October 31, 2007 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  18. Harry Plummer,Qatar

    In this photo is Hilliary describing the length of Bill's whatchamacallit!

    October 31, 2007 05:19 am at 5:19 am |
  19. DependableVoter

    Whose freedom is she more interested in? Is this Hillary the "uniter"??

    October 31, 2007 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
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