The Senate confirmed Kristen Clarke as the head of the Civil Rights’ division at the Department of Justice on May 25, NBC news reported. Clarke is the first Black woman to lead the division and was sworn in by the country’s first Black and first female vice president, Kamala Harris.
Clarke has a long civil rights’ history. She is the president of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. Clarke was also the head of the Civil Rights Bureau at the attorney general’s office in New York. Vice President Kamala Harris’ office said that Clarke was “a tireless champion of equal justice.”
All but one Republican voted against her DOJ confirmation in the 52-48. Sen. Tom Cotton, (R-Ark.) claimed that Clarke was only interested in “attacking police and calling everybody a racist.” Sen. Ted Cruz, (R-Texas) whose words helped to incite the attack on the Capital, also had negative comments about Clarke.
“Kristen Clarke is a radical extremist with a laundry list of concerning issues plaguing her nomination that go far beyond her support for defunding the police,” said Cruz.
The patriarchy tried it, but nothing could stop this Black girl magic. Sen. Dick Durbin, (D-Ill) had a more appropriate response to Clarke’s confirmation.
“At this moment in history, filling this division, the civil rights division, on the anniversary of George Floyd’s murder on the streets of Minnesota, we are choosing the first woman of color in the history of the United States to head this division,” said Durbin. “It is a historic choice. It shouldn’t be trivialized by those who want to paint a caricature of a woman not even close to the truth.”
Clarke denied that she planned to defund the police during her confirmation hearing but said that new strategies need to be employed.
“I do not support defunding the police. I do support finding strategies to ensure that law enforcement can carry out their jobs more safely and effectively and channeling resources to emotional health treatment and other severely under-resourced areas.”
Congratulations to the new Assistant Attorney General.