Although Senator Sheldon Whitehouse said it’s an “honor” to be among those considered to replace retiring US Attorney General Eric Holder, he said he’d rather be Rhode Island’s senator.
Whitehouse’s name surfaced in an Associated Press story about possible replacements for Holder, who announced he will be leaving the White House when a replacement is ready. But Whitehouse quickly diffused the rumors with this statement, emailed to several reporters:
“It would be a great honor to be considered for Attorney General of the United States, but my heart’s desire is representing Rhode Island in the Senate, and I have no interest in other positions. I look forward to participating in the Judiciary Committee’s process for considering the eventual nominee.”
Whitehouse is a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which will vet and vote on the next attorney general. He was Rhode Island’s attorney general from 1999 to 2003. He was a U.S. Attorney in Rhode Island from 1994 to 1998.
He sent this statement separately in regards to Holder’s resignation:
“Eric will be remembered as the Attorney General who brought the Department of Justice back from years of darkness under President Bush; when U.S. Attorneys were politicized, partisan tests influenced hiring, and sham legal opinions enabled our nation’s descent into torture. Attorney General Holder restored the confidence and morale of the Department, led successful prosecutions of terrorists and cyber criminals, and safeguarded the civil rights of all Americans. As a former US Attorney, I thank him for bringing honor and dignity to the Department for the last six years.”