VICE NEWS, 5 DECEMBER 2016, FEAT. PROF. SETH STOUGHTON:
If and when Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions assumes the role of United States attorney general in Donald Trump’s new administration, he will inherit a Department of Justice that has devoted considerable attention and resources to police reform over the past eight years.
In fact, former Attorney General Eric Holder repeatedly described the Civil Rights Division — which investigates law enforcement agencies that may be discriminatory or violating people’s rights — as the department’s “crown jewel.”
Sessions’ voting record and statements as a senator, however, reveal that he mostly wants the federal government to stay out of policing. And the president-elect, who called himself the “law and order” candidate, campaigned on a tough-on-crime, pro-police platform. Their stances signal a dramatic shift in priorities for the nation’s top law enforcement agency at a time when tensions surrounding police shootings show no sign of easing.