- Attorney General Holder to Resign
- October 3, 2014
- Law Firm: McDonald Hopkins LLC - Cleveland Office
After nearly six years in office, Attorney General Eric Holder is resigning his post. At a press conference at the White House on Thursday, President Obama praised Holder for his service as one of the longest-serving attorneys general in U.S. history. Since being appointed as a federal judge by President Reagan, Holder has served under six presidents of both parties.
"This is bittersweet," Obama said Thursday. "I chose him to serve as attorney general because he believes, as I do, that justice is not just an abstract theory. It's a living, breathing principle."
Among Holder's achievements, Obama credited him with "rooting out" corruption, fighting violent crime, and "reinvigorating" the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division.
The point about Holder's civil-rights work was particularly poignant on Thursday, the same day Michael Brown's parents appeared in Washington to talk about the death of their son. In August, Holder visited Ferguson, MO., to address racial tensions there.
In an emotional farewell speech, Holder called his time as attorney general the "greatest honor of my professional life." He choked up talking about his parents' influence on him, and thanked his wife and family for the "sacrifices" they made during his time in the White House.
But Holder's critics on the right and left felt some vindication. In a statement Thursday, Sen. Ted Cruz took Holder to task over DOJ's handling of the Internal Revenue Service targeting of conservative tea-party groups.
Civil-liberties advocates have also criticized Holder for his handling of the National Security Agency's mass data-collection programs. During his tenure, DOJ filed a lawsuit against Fox News reporter James Rosen, and spied on Associated Press reporters' phone calls.