President Barack Obama isn't giving up on filling three open slots at the Justice Department with the people he wants. This week, the president resubmitted three nominees whose names had been returned to the White House in December.
On Wednesday, Obama renominated Dawn Johnsen as assistant attorney general for the Office of Legal Counsel. Christopher Schroeder, a Duke Law School professor, was renominated to head the Office of Legal Policy. Mary Smith, formerly of the Chicago office of Schoeman, Updike & Kaufman, was renominated to lead the department’s Tax Division.
Johnsen’s nomination in particular has come under fire for her advocacy on behalf of abortion rights and civil liberties. Senate Republicans invoked a Senate rule to return Johnsen’s name, among others, to the White House on Dec. 24.
Today, the National Women’s Law Center in Washington issued a statement supporting Johnsen’s nomination and urging the Senate to move swiftly to confirm her. “The nomination of Dawn Johnsen to lead the OLC has been delayed for far too long,” Marcia Greenberger, co-president of the law center, said. “The OLC plays the critical role of providing objective, unbiased legal advice to the President and the agencies of the Executive Branch. Unfortunately, this office has been prevented for almost a year from having the leadership it needs.”