I hope to have a longer post up soon on the ramifications of the events of November 8. For now, I'd like to share the comments I made to my Senators - one of whom I voted against ten days ago - on the two nominations the President-elect made public on Friday:
Senators Casey and Toomey,NB: I had already seen Sen. Toomey's statement of support of Sen. Sessions' nomination when I wrote this - I elected to send it to him anyway.
I'm writing to you today to express my hope that you will oppose the nominations of Rep. Mike Pompeo to head the Central Intelligence Agency and of Sen. Jeff Sessions to be Attorney General.
Rep. Pompeo has made comments calling for the execution of Edward Snowden, prejudicing any future judicial proceeding that may eventuate against Snowden by declaring his desired outcome. Rep. Pompeo's stated opinions on the collection and retention of metadata are totally inconsistent with the American tradition of a people free to live their lives without the Government prying into their every activity, absent individualized suspicion of wrongdoing. All the reasons for which Senator Paul filibustered John Brennan's confirmation to this position apply with equal force to Sen. Pompeo.
Notwithstanding any comity you may personally feel with Sen. Sessions, the prospect of him as Attorney General carries perhaps greater implications for freedom in the Republic. Sen. Sessions fervently supports the President-elect's inhumane and unconstitutional proposals on immigration, and I have no doubts that he would unleash the full power of the Justice Department to achieve those ends. Doing so would pose grave threats to our freedoms under the First, Fourth, Fifth, and Eighth Amendments, and the effects would undoubtedly spill over to American citizens. I fear a renewed push for nationwide mandatory implementation of REAL ID and E-Verify, which run the risk of creating a "papers, please" state that would be the envy of the kingdom from which we broke in 1776 (to say nothing of the KGB or the Stasi). To add to this, Sen. Sessions' full-throated support of civil asset forfeiture is equally disqualifying. Seizing "guilty property" whose owners may have had no awareness of its criminal implications turns the concept of "innocent until proven guilty" on its head - in short, it's un-American, and needs to be eliminated, not expanded, as I fear Sen. Sessions will do.
I thank you for your service to the people of the Commonwealth, and look forward to your contribution to a healthy Senate debate on not only these appointments, but all those the new Administration makes.