The US Senate has confirmed Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions to become the next attorney general. The 52-47 vote mostly split along party lines after a heated debate in the chamber.
The US Senate confirmed Republican Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions to become US President Donald Trump's attorney general on Wednesday.
Following intense debate, the 52-47 vote was virtually split along party lines. Republicans voted in favor of their fellow Senator while all but one Democrat voted against nominating Sessions. Sessions himself did not vote for or against his nomination. Following the vote, there was extended applause from the senators.
US President Donald Trump has been upset by Democrats' efforts to stall the nomination, calling it a "disgrace" on Twitter on Tuesday. Sessions became just the sixth of 15 cabinet positions to be confirmed.
Sessions is known for being a long-time Trump supporter, and a supporter of Trump's anti-immigration policies. His confirmation comes during a contentious time, as Trump's temporary travel ban from seven predominately Muslim nations is being tested in court.
US Senator Elizabeth Warren was forced to read her speech during Session's confirmation hearing outside the Senate Chamber after she was rebuked by Senate leadership on Tuesday
The tense debate to confirm Sessions came to a head Tuesday when Democratic Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren was rebuked for quoting the widow of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., Coretta Scott King, in her criticism of Sessions in 1986. Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican from Kentucky, said Warren broke the rules about impugning a fellow senator.
Sessions will take control of the Justice Department following the confirmation. Previously, Sessions was a US attorney for the southern district of Alabama between 1981 and 1993; he then served as Alabama attorney general for two years before winning a seat in the US Senate in 1996, where he stayed until Wednesday's confirmation.
kbb/rc (AP, AFP)