The Senate Judiciary Committee needed only a minute today to endorse Duke University law professor Christopher Schroeder for a top Justice Department position, after a two-hour debate on the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor for the Supreme Court.
Schroeder is up for assistant attorney general in charge of the Office of Legal Policy. If confirmed, he would be a senior adviser to Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. on Justice Department policy and on legislation. He would also be responsible for helping to vet possible nominees to the federal courts, and for preparing them for Senate confirmation.
Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) called for a voice vote on Schroeder's nomination and that of three other legal nominees. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), the committee's top Republican, said there's "some concern about the nominees" among GOP senators, but he did not object to moving them forward.
The three other nominations are Alejandro Mayorkas for director of the Homeland Security Department's Citizenship and Immigration Services; Thomas McLellan for deputy director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy; and Cranston Mitchell for a seat on the U.S. Parole Commission. All four now head to the full Senate.