Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III is tragically our current US Attorney General. Born in 1946 in Selma, Alabama, he went to Huntingdon College where he was an active member of the Young Republicans. He then attended the University of Alabama School of Law and entered into private practice.
Sessions served as Assistant US Attorney for the Southern District of Alabama in 1975. He was later nominated by President Reagan to be the US Attorney for the Southern District of Alabama, for which he was confirmed. He served in that position for 12 years until Bill Clinton's Attorney General Janet Reno asked that he resign.
In 1994, Sessions was elected Attorney General of Alabama. Two years later, he became the republican Senator, a position he held until his nomination to Trump's cabinet.
In the Know
Sessions served as Vice-Chairman on Trump's transition team. He was influential in guiding Trump's foreign policy and national security policies during the campaign and had been gunning for the Attorney General position. He was the first member of the Senate to officially endorse Trump, in particular voicing his support of Trump's harsh immigration policy, an issue long important to Sessions himself.
Oh, Jeff. Like several other members of Trump's administration, Sessions failed to disclose, during his Senate confirmation hearing that he had met twice with Russian ambassador, Sergei Kislyak, during the election. Sessions insisted that nothing they discussed had any relevance to Trump's campaign, but democrats weren't buying it. Moral of the story: disclosing even getting a tissue from any Russian-related human is probably a good idea. Lying is what's sketchy.
In addition, as Attorney General, Sessions was supposed to head the investigation along with the FBI into Russian interference in the election. After cries for his resignation from Democrats and calls from Republicans to recuse himself, Sessions did so in a brief press announcement. Trump showed his support for Sessions by saying, "He could have stated his response more clearly, but it was clearly not intentional." Except that it was the only meeting he forgot to mention.
Sessions has received a lot of press about his views on race. At his Senate confirmation hearing, Senator Elizabeth Warren stood to read a letter written by Coretta Scott King in 1986 arguing Sessions was trying to silence the black vote. Warren was famously silenced by Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell. The sentiment in King's letter can be traced back to when Sessions chose to prosecute three civil rights workers, "The Marion Three," on voter fraud charges. They were acquitted and Sessions reputation tainted. During his confirmation hearing, Justice Department employee J. Gerald Herbert testified that Sessions had said the NAACP was "un-American" for trying to shove an issue down people's throats. Despite his insistence that he is for racial equality, an insistence that rests heavily on his role in prosecuting a KKK member for the lynching of a young African-American man, his track record is vague at best.
Sessions was raised in Monroe County, the birthplace of "To Kill a Mockingbird" author, Harper Lee. His father was an avid segregationist and Jeff was named after a Confederate General. Note to self: Beauregard will always sound white-supremacist. Consider removing from baby-naming books.