Sally Yates, former Deputy AG, currently and forever DGD

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?



15 thoughts on “Sally Yates, former Deputy AG, currently and forever DGD”

  1. In the words of the TV show “West Wing” – I serve at the pleasure of the President. If she felt that strongly about the law and the Constitution, the right thing to do would be to resign. The political thing to do was go to the press and get fired.

    1. Of course the right thing to do would have been to ask her opinion beforehand.
      Yes, she serves at the pleasure of the President, so he has the right to fire her. I don’t think anyone is questioning that.

      edit: In normal circumstances I agree, what she did was probably inappropriate. I suspect she feels that this is an extraordinary situation and wanted to make a statement.

  2. I believe her resignation was out of principle -although there’s no denying the partisan upside to becoming a martyr for standing on those principles.

    I’ve mentioned the “most reluctant Trump supporters” segment before. If Yates can peel a few of those toward her side, she’s a threat to any Republican candidate running statewide, and my side would be foolish to ignore that.

    (Not that that’s ever stopped us before.)

  3. Hasn’t she been an “equal opportunity” prosecutor? In addition to prosecuting Mitch Skandalakis and Linda Schrenko, I think she also was behind the conviction of former Atlanta Mayor Bill Campbell, whom I think is a Democrat? And perhaps some other folks on the overwhelmingly Democratic Atlanta City Council.

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