West Virginia Democratic Senator Joe Manchin said on Tuesday that he will support President Donald Trump’s pick for attorney general, William Barr.
Barr has been testifying before the Senate as part of his confirmation hearing and Manchin is the second Democrat to support the Republican nominated Attorney General candidate.
“Today I will vote to confirm William Barr to be the next Attorney General because he is well-qualified and I am confident that he will faithfully execute the duties of the chief law enforcement officer of the United States of America,” Manchin wrote in a tweet.
Today I will vote to confirm William Barr to be the next Attorney General because he is well-qualified and I am confident that he will faithfully execute the duties of the chief law enforcement officer of the United States of America.
— Senator Joe Manchin (@Sen_JoeManchin) February 12, 2019
Manchin’s announcement came hours before the Senate is slated to take their initial vote on Barr’s confirmation.
Trump’s nominee for Attorney General also served under Republican President, George H.W. Bush, and will only need a simple majority in the Senate to continue on his confirmation, according to The Hill.
“Though Democrats have raised concerns about Barr’s views on executive power and special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation — after Barr sent an unsolicited memo criticizing the probe — they are unlikely to be able to block his nomination.”
Since Democrats hold 47 seats in the Senate currently, the would need four Republicans to vote against the confirmation for Barr to lose their consent.
Republican Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky has already announced that he will oppose Barr, however both Manchin and fellow Democrat Doug Jones of Alabama support Trump’s candidate.
“I have concluded that Mr. Barr is qualified for the position of Attorney General and his record strongly suggests he will exercise independent judgment and uphold the best interests of the Department of Justice,” Jones said in a statement according to The Hill.
California Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein has rallied her fellows on the left against the candidate saying that she finds it “particularly concerning” that Barr wouldn’t commit to sharing Special Council Robert Mueller’s report with Congress.
Feinstein said she was disturbed that Barr’s theory seemed to insinuate that “the president is above the law in most respects.
“Taken to its natural conclusion none of our laws would apply to the president unless the president is explicitly named,” Feinstein said. “The only conclusion is that the president is above the law. That’s stunning.”