Judge Merrick Garland plans to tell senators on Monday that he will prioritize fighting discrimination and domestic extremism as well as upholding the rule of law and the independence of the Justice Department if confirmed as attorney general, according to a copy of his prepared testimony.
“If I am confirmed, serving as Attorney General will be the culmination of a career I have dedicated to ensuring that the laws of our country are fairly and faithfully enforced, and that the rights of all Americans are protected,” Garland is expected to say before the Senate Judiciary Committee.
President Joe Biden nominated Garland for attorney general five years after President Barack Obama nominated him for the U.S. Supreme Court. Republicans didn’t allow the 2016 nomination to move forward, saying that year’s presidential election winner should be allowed to choose the Supreme Court nominee.
In his prepared testimony, Garland states that while he has loved being a judge for nearly 24 years, his nomination to oversee the Justice Department comes at “a fitting time to reaffirm that the role of the Attorney General is to serve the Rule of Law and to ensure equal justice under the law.”
“That mission remains urgent because we do not yet have equal justice,” his testimony states. “Communities of color and other minorities still face discrimination in housing, education, employment, and the criminal justice system; and bear the brunt of the harm caused by pandemic, pollution, and climate change.”
He underlines the importance of also staying focused on domestic attacks by foreign terrorists and by extremists, specifically pointing to last month’s deadly riot at the Capitol that left at least five people dead.
“If confirmed, I will supervise the prosecution of white supremacists and others who stormed the Capitol on January 6 ― a heinous attack that sought to disrupt a cornerstone of our democracy: the peaceful transfer of power to a newly elected government,” the remarks note.
Read his full prepared remarks below: