November 2nd, 2007
02:09 PM ET
7 years ago

Source: Leahy to vote 'no' on Mukasey

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont will vote against the nomination of Michael Mukasey as attorney general, a source close to the senator told CNN Friday.

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Related video: Leahy won't vote for Mukasey 

Related: Bush plays the 9/11 card


Filed under: Michael Mukasey • Patrick Leahy
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. JK Ashburn, VA

    The Dems are playing into Bush's hand. They reject Mukasey despite having praised him at the outset. In a few weeks, during Congressional recess, Bush does a recess appointment of Ted Olsen. No advise and consent required because the recess apppointment doesn't expire until Bush leaves office.

    November 2, 2007 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  2. John, Kansas City, MO

    The story about confirming the Attorney General gets one sentence but the "story" about Carter gets a full page...and we wonder why our country is in turmoil. Any attorney who condones waterboarding should lose their license to practice law, not be nominated to be the leading lawyer in our country. Thank you Senator Leahy.

    November 2, 2007 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  3. christian, selden, ny

    dont vote this puppet in PLEASE!!!!

    November 2, 2007 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  4. therealist

    Our pitiful 110th Congress voting against another Bush appointee instead of trying to accomplish something, anything, positive in the last 2 months of 2007?? Noooooo, we would have never seen that coming...

    November 2, 2007 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  5. P. Sherman, Ontario Canada

    Isn't that a wise move under the circumstances? If your country has signed onto treaties and upheld against others that waterboarding is torture, then if this new nominee can't uphold your already established laws, isn't he on the same par with Alberto Gonzales, making excuses for the Executive branch to go against your country's own laws?

    November 2, 2007 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  6. Terry, El Paso, TX

    We don't need another mealy-mouthed sentence twister in the Attorney General's chair. As is made clear by his nominees for many offices, not just this one, this President is a poor judge of character. He surrounds himself with yes-men and a few yes-women. The chorus of "Yes, Mr. President" is surely one that presidents love to hear, but the really great ones surrounded themselves with very smart advisors who offer a variety of opinionsk, including disagreeable ones.

    November 2, 2007 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  7. Robb, New York

    As a moderate independent voter who leans to the Democratic platform, this is the kind of thing that turns me off to voting Democratic. Mukasey is the closest thing out there to a moderate attorney general nominee that we can expect from the Bush administration. He clearly stated that he didn't condone torture, but obviously that wasn't good enough for some Democrats, who had to nitpick and find an excuse to vote against him with the waterboarding question. Even Charles Schumer, one of the most liberal senators in Washington, supports Mukasey.

    Enough is enough. Confirm Mukasey and get on with it. We're going to have a new president in a few months, and then there will be a new attorney general. And that choice will likely be Democratic anyway. Then again, this kind of nitpicking does nothing but turn off voters like myself, who make or break every midterm or presidential election. And if we don't show up at the polls or vote Democratic... well, to state the obvious, the Republicans win.

    So go ahead, Democrats in the D.C. Sandbox. Keep playing your little games with the other Republican children and keep on ignoring the real issues that got you in power in the first place (Iraq, healthcare, immigration, etc.). Keep ignoring the voters. Keep showing the American people your utter contempt for us. That'll win you the White House for sure.

    It makes you wonder how these guys get on the ballot when Stephen Colbert can't. We can get all these jokers on a ballot but not a comedian by trade?

    November 2, 2007 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  8. Steve, Lyons, CO

    Good. Derail this creep. Anyone that can't decide if waterboarding is torture has no business being Attorney General of
    the U.S.

    We've already been through two of Bush's torture-loving A.G.s; we don't need a third.

    November 2, 2007 03:07 pm at 3:07 pm |
  9. Patrick, New York, NY

    Finally the Dems actually showing some back bone

    November 2, 2007 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  10. Wallace

    As reported on CNN...

    "I am eager to restore strong leadership and independence to the Department of Justice. I like Michael Mukasey. I wish that I could support his nomination. But I cannot. America needs to be certain and confident of the bedrock principle - deeply embedded in our laws and our values - that no one, not even the president, is above the law."

    well said Senator... well said.
    Now if someone can help our fellow Americans who insist on supporting secrecy and hazy answers from both parties to understand that, things would be much better.

    Wallace

    November 2, 2007 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  11. jw, canadian,ok

    Thank you Sen. Leahy, we don't need another bootlicker in the Justice Dept.

    November 2, 2007 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  12. Howard Hewlett, Des Moines IA

    Why even bother? We should know by now that this guy is going to get his office. Admitting that waterboarding is torture is going to open the door to legal ramifications that most Americans are not ready to deal with. Simply put, waterboarding is torture, Bush let it be done, and nothing will happen. I suppose the bigger question is whether or not this kills the last shread of moral authority we had?

    November 2, 2007 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  13. Wallace

    Robb from New York,

    Are you serious?

    "Mukasey is the closest thing out there to a moderate attorney general nominee that we can expect from the Bush administration."

    So the answer is to settle? Robb, this one is a no brainer. Read the article. Just because someone says that "torture is repugnant" means nothing. The attorney general is the "Top Cop". If he won't denounce waterboarding as unconstitutional it can still be practiced,regardless of what he "says".

    It's like saying "Murder is bad", but then when it happens, you don't prosecute because you don't think it is "against the law". Watch how these people play with words.

    To quote my favorite action figure commercial from years ago... "There is more than meets the eye."

    Wallace

    November 2, 2007 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  14. JDS N.C.

    Big surprise? Leahy would only accept someone who represented his non mainstream beliefs.

    November 2, 2007 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  15. Brian, Vienna VA

    Vote for Mukasey, but don't let him study it. Require him to under go waterboarding for 1 hour on five occasions (after 4 tell him the fifth will be done at a later time and he won't be warned). If he doesn't think it is torture then, neither will I.

    November 2, 2007 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  16. Dave, NY, NY

    Democrats were for torture to save lives before they were against it. Once again the Democrats are flipping and floppin in the wind

    November 2, 2007 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  17. pbj, San Ramon, CA

    Has it occurred to the Democrats that maybe there is a reason that first Gonzales sanctioned waterboarding and now Mukassey - despite initially being highly praised for his respect for the rule of law and his moderation - is refusing to rule it out under all circumstances? We may not like the world we live in, but we'd better be prepared to do the things we need to do to survive in it.

    November 2, 2007 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  18. Ray, Rochester

    I realize this post might be a little too complex for you Bush-Bashers to understand but please bear with me...

    If the Dems want to define waterboarding as torture, they should pass a law that says it is.

    According to The Wall Street Journal, Dems have had two chances to ban waterboarding, The Deatainee Treatment Act of 2005 and the Military Commissions Act of 2006. Senator Ted Kennedy even added an ammendment to the Military Commissions Act prohibiting waterboarding. The act lost on the Senate by a vote of 46 to 53.

    Face facts, no President, including those Dems who seem disgusted by waterboarding, will ever hold back the CIA from "torturing" a captured terrorist who has intimate and specific knowledge of a nuclear device planted in a major American city.

    Do any of you honestly think that President will want to have the deaths of possibly millions of Americans on his/her hands knowing that he/she could have prevented such a calamity?

    Any President will tell the CIA to do whatever they need to do to get the information before the disaster occured. If you don't believe this then you really are living in la la land.

    The candidates will always tell you lemmings whatever you want to hear just to get your votes. Once they are in office, though, all bets are off and they will do whatever is necessary to save lives. Thank god for that.

    November 2, 2007 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  19. Walt, Belton, TX

    I hope Bush just appoints Judge Mukasey when congress is out to lunch and he'll get to serve his entire prospective term anyway. Bush doesn't need some political dribbler from Vermont to second guess him.

    November 2, 2007 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  20. PollM, Dallas Tx

    Bravo

    November 2, 2007 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  21. John Chicago

    This Leahy guy has to be the biggest obstructnist ever to walk. SHAME SHAME SHAME

    November 2, 2007 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  22. john williams san diego, ca.

    Wallace...'help fellow americans who insist on supporting secrecy' do you have any idea WHY they call him LEAKY LEAHY?..he will forever have that moniker.

    November 2, 2007 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  23. Wynter, Loudon, NH

    To Ray,

    You are citing the Congress of 2005 for goodness sake. The majority of the Senate was Republican. It's clear that the GOP has been supporting this obviously insane president throughout this war. So now you are blaming the 2007 Congress based on what the 2005 Congress "couldn't" get through?

    Also, it's a simple fact known by intelligence experts in the CIA that acts of torture on a suspect doesn't typically get you the truth. It only gets you what the suspect thinks you want to hear so you will stop. The only thing it is good for is as an unused weapon to hang over their heads as a possibility. But even that is more than likely to be useless.

    Sorry but you have been watching too many Chuck Norris flicks. Good intel comes from real human intel on the ground backed up with electronic surveillance. Water boarding is only good for getting our troops tortured during the next battle with another country now that the Geneva Conventions have been thrown out the window.

    Telling it like I see it,
    Wynter

    November 2, 2007 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  24. Chip Celina OH

    Good. Derail this creep. Anyone that can't decide if waterboarding is torture has no business being Attorney General of
    the U.S.

    Posted By Steve, Lyons, CO : November 2, 2007 3:07 pm

    But someone that changes positions on driver's licenses for illegals within a two minute span should be our president?

    Glad to see you're on board there buddy.

    November 2, 2007 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  25. Ryan, New York, NY

    If the Dems want to define waterboarding as torture, they should pass a law that says it is.

    According to The Wall Street Journal, Dems have had two chances to ban waterboarding, The Deatainee Treatment Act of 2005 and the Military Commissions Act of 2006. Senator Ted Kennedy even added an ammendment to the Military Commissions Act prohibiting waterboarding. The act lost on the Senate by a vote of 46 to 53.

    Posted By Ray, Rochester : November 2, 2007 4:13 pm

    Hey Ray, who was in charge of the Senate when those didn't pass in 2005 and 2006? 55-44-1 if I recall, which means that at least one Republican agreed, too.

    November 2, 2007 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
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