US President-elect Joe Biden has said his nominees for the Justice Department will serve the interest of Americans and not his presidency.
Biden, who is expected to take over office on January 20, stated this on Thursday after Congress leaders affirmed his Electoral College victory over incumbent President Donald Trump whose supporters rioted and invaded Capitol in Washington on Wednesday, in a failed move to stop the Congress from affirming the Democrat’s win.
The president-elect tweeted, “Our nominees for the Justice Department will restore the independence of the Department, so it serves the interests of the people—not a presidency. They’ll rebuild public trust in the rule of law and work to ensure a more fair and equitable justice system.”
Biden nominated 68-year-old Merrick Garland, a centrist judge that Republicans denied a seat on the Supreme Court five years ago, to be US attorney general.
Others nominated for the justice department by Biden are Lisa Monaco as deputy attorney general; Vanita Gupta as associate attorney general; and Kristen Clarke as assistant attorney general for the civil rights division.
Garland, a judge on the Washington federal appeals court, has a record as a moderate liberal and is not aligned with either political party.
Garland has had a long career as a private-sector lawyer and a federal prosecutor.
In 1997, president Bill Clinton named him to the Washington appeals court, and he received broad support from Democratic and Republican senators in his confirmation.
He became chief judge of that court in 2013 and, in March 2016, was picked by Obama to fill a seat on the Supreme Court after Antonin Scalia died.
His nomination as attorney general is likely to easily pass the Senate, which is to come under narrow Democratic Party control. He is likely to garner Republican support as well.