Members of the Congressional Black Caucus, including fellow Sen. Cory Booker and civil rights icon John Lewis, are expected to testify at the confirmation of Sen. Jeff Sessions.
Sessions, Donald Trump’s choice to be attorney general, faces opposition by many who are concerned about his attitudes on race, gender, religion and the LGBTQ community.
Booker will be the first sitting senator to ever testify against another member of the Senate in such a hearing.
“I’m breaking a pretty long Senate tradition,” Booker told MSNBC.
“We’ve seen Jeff Sessions…consistently voting against or speaking out against key ideals of the Voting Rights Act, taking measures to try to block criminal justice reform. He has a posture and a positioning that I think represent a real danger to our country.”
Sessions’s nomination by Ronald Reagan to become a U.S. District Court judge was blocked in 1986, after colleagues at the Justice Department testified he had uttered racial slurs.
On Tuesday, answering questions from the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sessions repeatedly defended his record on civil rights.
“I abhor the Klan and its hateful ideology,” he said. “I never declared the NAACP was un-American.”