Thursday, September 25, 2014

Why Holder is Stepping Down

Actually, more to the point, why Holder is stepping down at this exact point in time.

Short answer: Politics.

Long answer:

Holder had previously indicated he'd be resigning as US Attorney General by the end of the year.

By announcing his resignation at this particular point in time, he makes confirmation of his successor a political issue just as a major election approaches.

As the Reuters story on his resignation ever so blandly notes:

Republicans ... hinted at the difficulties Obama will face in getting a successor confirmed.
If anyone was wondering what contribution the rather unpopular president could make to Democratic efforts to hold the US Senate, this is that contribution.

For the next two months, we're going to hear all about "obstructionist Republicans" blocking presidential appointments.

And if he's really smart about it he will pick an appointee from one of the states where the Democrats are in tight races to hold Senate seats ... or perhaps from Georgia or Kansas, where the Democrats have real chances of picking up both a US Senate seat and a governorship (yes, I know the Kansas candidate is a Perot-type "pragmatic" "independent" who's playing it cagey, but you know he will jump right onto the "confirm presidential appointees, we need to get things done" wagon on the issue).

Probably not a massive game-changer, but it could affect several close races in the Democrats' favor.

So now you know why ... or at least why now.

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