After weeks in limbo, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III has been confirmed the 84th Attorney General of the United States in a 52-47 vote.
WASHINGTON — Senator Jeff Sessions, Republican of Alabama, was confirmed on Wednesday as President Trump’s attorney general, capping a bitter and racially charged nomination battle that crested with the procedural silencing of a leading Democrat, Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who had criticized the Alabama senator from the Senate floor.
Mr. Sessions survived a near-party-line vote, 52 to 47, the latest sign of the extreme partisanship at play as Mr. Trump strains to install his cabinet. No Republicans broke ranks in their support of a colleague who will become the nation’s top law enforcement official after two decades in the Senate.
But the confirmation process — ferocious even by the standards of moldering decorum that have defined the body’s recent years — laid bare the Senate’s deep divisions at the outset of the Trump presidency. At the same time, the latest star turn for Ms. Warren rekindled the gender-infused politics that animated the presidential election and the women’s march protesting Mr. Trump the day after his inauguration last month.
As of Wednesday, Trump was still waiting on confirmation for 10 of his 15 Cabinet nominees. By this time in 2001, then-President George W. Bush had his entire Cabinet confirmed. Then-President Barack Obama was just three short of a full Cabinet on Feb. 8, 2009.
While Trump is pressing ahead with his agenda on immigration, security and other issues, the slow pace of confirmations underscores the struggle his administration will continue to face in getting things done.
“It is a disgrace that my full Cabinet is still not in place, the longest such delay in the history of our country. Obstruction by Democrats!” Trump tweeted overnight, as the Senate prepared to vote on his nomination of Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., for attorney general.
It is a disgrace that my full Cabinet is still not in place, the longest such delay in the history of our country. Obstruction by Democrats!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 8, 2017