GOP Senator Holds DOJ Nominations In Protest Of Trump’s Indictment

Sen. JD Vance (R-OH) has announced his intention to place a hold on most Department of Justice (DOJ) nominees put forth by the Biden administration. This decision comes as a protest of the indictment brought against former President Donald Trump in relation to his alleged refusal to hand over classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago home.

Vance revealed his plan on Tuesday, starting with his concerns about the politicization of the Justice Department. 

“Donald Trump is merely the latest victim of a Department of Justice that cares more about politics than law enforcement. Merrick Garland’s department harasses Christians for pro-life advocacy but allows hardened criminals to walk our streets unpunished,” he stated.

“This must stop, and I will do everything in my ability to ensure it does,” the Ohio senator added. “Starting today, I will hold all Department of Justice nominations. If Merrick Garland wants to use these officials to harass Joe Biden’s political opponents, we will grind his department to a halt.”

Taking to Twitter later, Vance wrote, “Until Merrick Garland stops using his agency to harass Joe Biden’s political opponents, I will hold all DoJ nominees.”

Clarifying his position, his office confirmed that the hold would apply to all DOJ nominees, with the exemption of U.S. Marshals. This means that each of the nominees will require floor votes to be confirmed by the Senate, making their nominations more difficult to approve than it is via the usual swift route of unanimous consent.

The declaration of hold was met with the support of several Republicans, including Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA). Reacting to his tweet, she wrote, “Yes @JDVance1! Thank you! Action is the only way forward. Stop the weaponized government and hold them accountable!”

Trump’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., also responded to the tweet, saying, “JD Vance is one of the few Republicans in the US Senate who isn’t afraid to stand up to Biden, Garland and the radical left.”

Throughout Biden’s tenure, Republicans have employed holds to slow down the passage of legislation and confirmations. For example, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AK) placed holds on DOJ nominees last year to raise concerns about the treatment of deputy US marshals who participated in protests in Portland, Oregon, in 2020. 

Likewise, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) successfully created a yearlong logjam on Defense Department confirmations during the previous Congress. Currently, Sen. Tommy Tuberville of Alabama has placed holds on DOD nominees to kick against a Pentagon policy that provides paid leave and funding for abortion travel for service members.