As Congress evaluates the confirmation of Sen. Jeff Sessions (R.-Ala.) for U.S. Attorney General, a letter written by Coretta Scott King in 1986 has surfaced, urging the Congress at that time to block his nomination for federal judge.
In the letter obtained by the Washington Post, the widow of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said that allowing Sessions to join the federal bench would “irreparably damage the work of my husband.”
Mrs. King’s letter became a crucial part of the argument against Sessions’s confirmation, which ultimately led to the then Alabama lawyer failing to clinch a nomination.
“Anyone who has used the power of his office as United States Attorney to intimate and chill the free exercise of the ballot by citizens should not be elevated to our courts,” she wrote in a 9-page letter. “Mr. Sessions has used the awesome powers of his office in a shabby attempt to intimidate and frighten elderly black voters. For this reprehensible conduct, he should not be rewarded with a federal judgeship.”
Thirty years later, the now senator may possibly become America’s top cop, one who would govern the country’s justice department and oversee the overall criminal justice system.
Read Coretta Scott King’s entire letter here.