Alabama’s sole Democratic rep in Congress, Terri Sewell, reached across the aisle on Wednesday and offered her Republican colleague, Sen. Jeff Sessions, encouraging words following President-Elect Donald Trump‘s Friday selection of Sessions as his nominee for attorney general.
“Senator Jeff Sessions has been given a tremendous honor and responsibility by the President-Elect to serve as the head of the Department of Justice,” said Sewell. “As a colleague and member of the Alabama delegation, I hope to work productively with him in his new position.”
While Sewell was quick to point out she doesn’t agree with Sessions on all of his policy positions, she proffered keen insights to her Democratic colleagues, many of whom are skeptical of Sessions, regarding his willingness to “hear dissenting views.”
“While we do not agree on many important social justice issues, Senator Sessions and I have enjoyed a productive working relationship on economic development issues that have benefited my constituents and our state,” Sewell continued. “I am also appreciative that he was the Senate sponsor of the Foot Soldiers Congressional Gold Medal Bill that paid tribute to those who sacrificed for the equal right to vote in this country.
“Over the past six years in my personal interactions with Senator Sessions, I have known him as someone who is willing to hear dissenting views. It will be imperative now more than ever that he weigh all sides of the crucial issues and make reasoned decisions that will benefit all Americans.”
Sessions is arguably the most controversial of Trump’s appointments thus far. In 1986 he was nominated for a federal judgeship but was rejected due to allegations of racist comments. To many, he’s proven he’s not racist, but Sewell says she intends to hold Sessions “accountable for protecting the precious civil and human rights of all Americans” regardless.
“As the Representative of Alabama’s 7th Congressional district, I share the serious concerns raised by the national civil rights community, and I stand with my constituents in holding Senator Sessions accountable for protecting the precious civil and human rights of all Americans in his new role as the nation’s top law enforcer,” Sewell concluded.