Jeff Sessions becomes attorney general – Franken, Klobuchar vote no

Every Republican voted in favor of Jeff Sessions, while all but one Democrat voted against him.
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Jeff Sessions is the attorney general of the United States.

Sessions was confirmed as the nation's top law enforcement official by a 52-47 vote in the Senate Wednesday. (The missing 100th vote is Sessions himself – he didn't vote.)

The vote was almost exclusively along party lines, with all Republicans and one single Democrat voting in favor. Every other Democrat, plus two Independents, voted against Sessions.

That includes Minnesota Democrats Al Franken and Amy Klobuchar, both of whom last month indicated they wouldn't support him. That came after both got a chance to grill Sessions during confirmation hearings.

He's a former prosecutor, and has been a U.S. senator for Alabama since first taking the office in 1997. He was sworn in to his new position Thursday morning, USA Today reports.

Sessions faced intense scrutiny – particularly from Democrats – for his stances on climate change and immigration, as well as a trail of racism accusations that span his decades in the public sector.

But supporters pushed back, saying his record has been distorted and he's been unfairly dogged by those accusations, the New York Times reports.

Franken spoke Wednesday before the vote, and in a Facebook post said Sessions has "demonstrated an inability to recognize injustice – whether it’s discrimination faced by LGBT people, discriminatory barriers to the ballot box, or violence against women."

Klobuchar hasn't written anything since the day of the vote, but previously expressed concerns about whether he could set aside political loyalties when reviewing orders from President Donald Trump's White House, and in a statement to the Star Tribune noted Sessions voted against the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act in 2013 despite bipartisan support.

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