Eric Holder

Obama's Replacement for Attorney General Eric Holder Should be a Republican: Instapundit


Writing in USA Today, Glenn Reynolds, the Instapundit, offers provocative advice to President Obama when it comes to naming a new attorney general: Reach across the aisle.

This frequently happens with secretaries of Defense, and it has been of benefit to the administrations that have done it. FDR picked a Republican, Henry Stimson, to be secretary of War in 1940, and that meant that the war — and the war's casualties — became a bipartisan matter instead of fodder for partisan attacks. President Obama retained George W. Bush's Defense secretary, Robert Gates, for most of his first term. He replaced Gates with another Republican, Chuck Hagel, in that position.

Having a Defense secretary from the other party makes war bipartisan, and reassures members of the opposition that the powers of the sword aren't being abused. Likewise, naming an attorney general from the opposite party would tend to make the administration of justice bipartisan, and would provide considerable reassurance, as Holder's tenure in office emphatically did not, that the powers of law enforcement were not being abused in service of partisan ends. In an age of all-encompassing criminal laws, and pervasive government spying, that's a big deal.

I'm not sure I want war to be bipartisan but the idea of a Republican AG would really restart any number of conversations that have stalled out or stopped due to acrimony all around.

Reynolds provides a useful capsule summary of how the position is usually filled:

…in choosing a friend, Obama was following in the footsteps of presidents going all the way back to George Washington, who named Revolutionary War comrades-in-arms to the slot. John F. Kennedy named his brother Robert to be attorney general, and Richard Nixon named his law partner, John Mitchell. In many ways, this makes sense: The attorney general of the United States is at the top of the law enforcement apparatus, and in that position, you want someone you can trust.

But while presidents may feel better having an intimate, if not a crony, in charge of law enforcement, that kind of closeness raises questions for the rest of us. 

Read the whole thing here.

And read Reason on Holder's legacy here, here, and here.

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  1. Interesting. Thanks, Nick.

  2. How about someone more competent than say, John Kerry or Susan Rice?

    1. So pretty much anyone, then?

    2. Pick a name from the phone book.

  3. I’m sure the president is just dying to have an adversarial AG look into the IRS situation.

    1. It would please me to no end to have him appoint a crony only to have that person turn on him because his term is nearing an end.

    2. There are plenty of non-adversarial Republicans to choose from.

      But he’s not going to, he’s already done the ‘token Cabinet member from across the aisle’ with LaHood and Hagel.

  4. There’s about as much a chance of that happening as there is of Tom Brady being effective behind that offensive line he’s got now.

    1. I can’t remember the last time I enjoyed a football game as much as last night’s humiliation of Brady and the Pats.

      Its sad, but I enjoy watching the Pats get their asses kicked more than I enjoy watching my Cowboys kick someone’s ass. Granted, its been awhile . . .

  5. There is no shortage of candidates willing to shit all over my freedom in the spirit of bipartisan fearmongering.

    1. Yeah, and the examples given in the article aren’t … reassuring.

    2. No there won’t be. I believe the term is spelled PROSECUTOR.

  6. LOLOL You have to give Reynolds credit. That is first class concern trolling there. I have a better chance of being named AG than any Republican. The AG’s job is to insure Obama runs out the clock on his various scandals.

  7. Never happen. Nation administration of cowards.

  8. I’m sure Obama has a number of hangers-on from Hah-Vard Lahw Skool who are ready to shit on liberty for him.

    1. Sure, but he needs a Republican for this to work. What are the odds?

  9. OK these buys make no sense at all man.

  10. Right, Nick. And when Rand Paul is President, you’ll be calling on him to name a progressive as AG. Right.

    1. Why not? I am quite sure Nick would be on board with saying every President should appoint an AG from the other party.

      Not everyone is as unprincipled of an asshole as you are.

  11. It would be a good move for Obama. On the other hand, a Republican would have to be batshit crazy to take the job. Their political career would effectively be over and they’d be hamstrung on posing any challenge to the administration. In effect, they’d throwing their political career away to play window dressing and bipartisan cover for the administration.

  12. I made another cup of coffee and sat down, woke up the computer and reloaded the page. When I saw the title to this article I almost fell out of my chair.

    It seems Reynolds does not understand the function of the AG.

  13. Like Ashcroft or Alberto Gonzalez?

    I want Jennifer Granholm. At least she is attractive and a former Attorney General.

    No one he picks will satisfy the wingnuts or emo-progs.

  14. Counterpoint: Obama should appoint a sycophantic partisan to the slot, ideally one with no legal experience at all. That way nobody will feel the need to defer to ridiculous statements.

    Appointing a respected and established Republican is a good way to get conservatives to calm down about all the horrible things DOJ does.

  15. Writing in USA Today, Glenn Reynolds, the Instapundit, offers provocative advice to President Obama when it comes to naming a new attorney general: Reach across the aisle.

    Wouldn’t that be ‘reach around the isle’?

  16. Choose a Republican? Let him investigate “Fast & Furious”? Produce enough evidence to impeach and convict Obozo? Put Eric Holder and Obozo behind bars for the rest of their lives?


    I don’t think the Criminal-in-Chief will go for it.

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