WASHINGTON (CNN) - Attorney General-designate Eric Holder was harshly criticized Friday for "playing Russian roulette" with the safety of Americans by making an "egregious recommendation" in 1999 of clemency for 16 members of a Puerto Rican nationalist group convicted on conspiracy and bomb-making charges.
Joseph Connor, the son of a victim of a 1975 New York City restaurant bombing by the FALN - or Armed Forces of National Liberation - testified during the second day of confirmation hearings for Holder that the former federal judge and prosecutor was "soft on terror" and, as a result, should be "disqualified" for the position of attorney general.
"These terrorists took away my dad's life," Connor said. "Did he actually believe in their cause? Did he not know what they did?" Holder stated during his confirmation hearing Thursday that President Clinton's decision to grant clemency to the 16 FALN members "was reasonable."
Holder also noted that there were "a lot of people in support of that clemency request," including former President Jimmy Carter and Coretta Scott King, the wife of Martin Luther King, Jr.
The FALN is responsible for multiple attacks on U.S. military installations.