WASHINGTON (CNN) - Attorney general nominee Eric Holder is leaving a lucrative job as a high-powered Washington lawyer to take a modest government salary as the nation's top law enforcement official - but he won't have to pinch pennies.
According to documents released Monday by a Senate panel, Holder has accumulated assets worth more than $5.7 million dollars. The documents made public by the Senate Judiciary Committee show that if Holder is confirmed, he will give up an annual salary of more than $2 million dollars to accept the government post which pays a comparatively paltry $186,600.
The information Holder provided for his confirmation hearings shows he received $2,154,364 as a partner in the prestigious Washington firm Covington and Burling this year. Next year he will receive even more, even though he will no longer be working there.
"Upon my separation from the firm, and prior to assuming the duties of attorney general, I will receive repayment of my partner capital account ($632,767), deferred compensation from the firm's prior fiscal year ($680,820), a pro-rata share of partner compensation for work I performed in the current fiscal year ($484,073) and a separation payment to be paid prior to or immediately following my separation ($1,344,050)," Holder wrote.
Committee Chairman Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont, announced Monday the confirmation hearing tentatively scheduled for January 7 has been delayed until January 15 to accommodate Republican requests.
Leahy complained that Republicans are delaying a process that may prevent Holder from being in place at the Justice Department when President-elect Barack Obama is sworn in on January 20.
Democrats control the Senate and are expected to approve the nomination, but some Republicans have raised concerns. In particular, conservative lawmakers say they intend to examine Holder's controversial role in approving over the objections of federal prosecutors a pardon of fugitive Marc Rich in Bill Clinton's final hours as president.