When Sally Yates was selected by President Obama for her position in the Department of Justice she required Senate confirmation. She was questioned by Senator Jeff Sessions.
In it she is asked, and encouraged, if she will stand up to the White House when they propose to do something unlawful. Senator David Perdue implored her to do the same during his questioning. And what did she say? “My duty is to the law and to the Constitution.”
And she has done exactly what they asked her to do. And she was fired because of it.
Yesterday, in her position as Acting Attorney General (because Jeff Sessions has not yet been confirmed), Sally Yates defied the Trump administration and declared that under her watch, the Department of Justice would not defend Donald Trump’s Executive Order on Immigration in court:
“My responsibility is to ensure that the position of the Department of Justice is not only legally defensible, but is informed by our best view of what the law is after consideration of all the facts,” she said in a letter. “In addition, I am responsible for ensuring that the positions we take in court remain consistent with this institution’s solemn obligation to always seek justice and stand for what is right.”
And that has made her a hero to everyone who feels that President Trump’s Executive Order does not reflect the values of this country. Which, it turns out, is a tremendous number of people. Speculation in Democratic circles here in Georgia immediately turned toward the possibility of Yates as a gubernatorial or senatorial candidate.
Yates’ litany of doting letters from Georgia’s top Republicans is well earned (Isakson+Chambliss, Deal). Matched with a decade of prosecuting corrupt politicians in Atlanta, it’s hard to understate her appeal to the elusive 3-5% of moderate, OTP white votes Democrats have been aimlessly chasing since “Boot Barnes” was a main stay on bumpers down in Perdue Country.
Could this Damn Good Dawg be the key to a Democrat winning statewide?