Horace Cooper, a former constitutional law professor, called out Senate Democrats Monday for race baiting during the Loretta Lynch hearings.
Cooper, a co-chairman of Project 21, called Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin out for using race to distract from legitimate questions and concerns over whether Lynch should even be the Attorney General.
In response to Republican stonewalling on the nomination, Durbin said on the Senate floor last week, “and so Loretta Lynch, the first African-American woman nominated to be attorney general, is asked to sit in the back of the bus when it comes to the Senate calendar.”
“That is unfair. It’s unjust,” he added. “The fact is there is no substantive reason to stop this nomination.”
Cooper says this volley comes from a desire to avoid debating the issues surrounding both Lynch and bills tied up in the Senate.
“They don’t care what the facts are, what the circumstances are, they don’t even care if it hurts their cause,” Cooper told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Project 21, an initiative of The National Center for Public Policy Research, seeks to promote the views of African-Americans who have not traditionally been represented by the civil rights establishment.
“This is truly shameful,” Cooper also noted. “Instead of letting Loretta Lynch’s nomination rise or fall on the merits, Washington liberals in the House and Senate are trying to use her race and gender as a tool to prevent any examination of her record or agenda.”
The big concern is Lynch’s involvement in a prior HSBC settlement. At the time she decided not to prosecute the bank for money laundering offenses without even hearing from key regulators and other important witnesses. Cooper and many Republicans fear she is more an advocate of the White House’s agenda as opposed to a mutual arbiter.
“She was on watch with the HSBC case,” Cooper continued. “There was a lot of dancing around the questions.”
Cooper sees these sorts of questions as legitimate and that Republicans are right to hold off on approving her nomination until they know for sure she is going to act fair and just in her position.
“There is no evidence she is being held back because of her race or sex,” Cooper declared. “It’s not DNA, its policy.”
“Identity politics is at the center of that party,” he added. “We absolutely, under their vision, must be judged by how we look.”