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Independent Living News & Policy from the National Council on Independent Living

Action Alert: Act Today to Support Loretta Lynch for Attorney General!

In the last 30 years, no nominee for US Attorney General has waited longer than Loretta Lynch. Loretta Lynch is more than qualified to be our next Attorney General and demonstrates a steadfast commitment to justice.

We need your help spreading the word. Please contact your Senators, especially if they are Republican. We need Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to move this vote to the full Senate today!

Loretta LynchWe need a push to all Senators, but especially from the following states: Alaska, Georgia, Illinois, New Hampshire, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, and West Virginia.

Act Now:

  1. Call your Senator: Contact your Senators at 1-866-338-5720. Make sure you give them your name and identify yourself as a constituent. Tell them, “Please Confirm Loretta Lynch as Attorney General now,” and why it is important to you. See Talking Points for more information.
  2. Send a letter (organizations and individuals): Draft your own letter or use our Sample Letter by adding your information, including name, address, and why this is important to you. Then, email or use social media to get it to your Senator!
  3. Use social media to tell your Senator to vote to confirm Loretta Lynch: All US Senators are on Twitter and their teams follow these closely. Twitter Hashtags: #LorettaLynch, #ConfirmLynch. You may also wish to join the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights’ Twitter Storm, which occurs every Thursday 11:00 a.m. Eastern.
  4. Media outreach: Write Op-Eds for local news and talk with your local media.
  5. Thank the Republican Senators who have publicly stated that they will vote to confirm Lynch: Collins (ME), Flake (AZ), Graham (SC), and Hatch (UT).

Sample Letter

[Date]
[Address of Senator]
Regarding: Confirmation of Loretta Lynch for Attorney General

Dear [Senator’s Name],

[Your Introduction]

The Department of Justice plays a critical role in protecting the rights of people with disabilities and effectuating the promise of integration and access in the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. We are confident that Ms. Lynch will carry on the recent ground-breaking work of the Department of Justice in advancing the employment and community integration of people with disabilities.

One law of great importance to our work is the Americans with Disabilities Act and the integration mandate in Olmstead v. L.C., 527 U.S. 581 (1999) that people with disabilities receive services in the least restrictive setting to the person’s liberty. The Olmstead decision has improved the lives of millions of people with disabilities by providing them the opportunity for full community integration in their homes, their jobs, and their daily lives.

Ms. Lynch is an exemplar leader that the Department of Justice needs to carry on its work. She has respect and support across the political spectrum because she listens to and works with people from all perspectives to accomplish significant outcomes. She has demonstrated skill inside and outside of the courtroom, including as a litigator in her multiple positions working in the U.S. Attorney’s office of the Eastern District starting in 1990. She left the public life in 2001 to become a partner in the law firm of Hogan and Hartson and remained dedicated to the rights of all people and the work of enforcing United States laws.

[I strongly support / Name of Organization strongly supports] the nomination of Loretta Lynch for the position of United States Attorney General. [I / we] encourage you to confirm Ms. Lynch swiftly so that the Department can continue the important work of law enforcement as efficiently and effortlessly as possible. Her experience and understanding of the law will enable her to effectively enforce the rights of all Americans, including people with disabilities. Please contact [Your name and contact information] with any questions or concerns.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

Talking Points on the Nomination of Loretta Lynch for Attorney General

Source: Leadership Conference on Civil Rights

Based on her 30-year career, it is clear that U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch is a highly qualified nominee to lead the Department of Justice. The Senate should swiftly vote to confirm her.

  • United States Attorney Loretta Lynch has a powerful record as a proven leader within the Department of Justice. Throughout her 30-year career, she has distinguished herself as a tough, fair, and independent lawyer who has twice headed one of the most active and effective U.S. Attorney’s offices in the country.
    • Lynch was confirmed by the Senate to lead the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York (EDNY) not once, but twice; first, from 1999 to 2001, and again from 2010 to the present.
      • In her role as U.S. Attorney, Lynch effectively manages over 160 Assistant U.S. Attorneys and 120 support staff on the front lines of America’s fight against terrorism, public corruption and community violence in some of our nation’s toughest neighborhoods.
      • Under Lynch’s leadership, the EDNY has developed a national security practice that has tried more terrorism cases since 9/11 than any other office in the country, prosecuted groundbreaking cyber and international organized crime cases, built an MS-13 gang program that is a national model, crafted institutional change in the construction industry in New York, championed victims of human trafficking, defended the government in litigation, and protected the environment.
  • Lynch has a reputation for being a hands-on and approachable executive, who walks the halls of the office and interacts directly with staff at all levels.  She is tough but fair.
  • With hard work and support from her family, Lynch received her Bachelor of Arts, cum laude, from Harvard College in 1981. She went on to receive a Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School.

U.S. Attorney Lynch’s strong experience and vast support is undeniable; some Members have used her nomination as an opportunity to voice their opposition to the President’s agenda, NOT to Lynch’s experience or credentials.

  • Few can question U.S. Attorney Lynch’s credentials. Her confirmation should not be a “proxy war of sorts” over President Obama’s executive action on immigration and other GOP objections to the President’s policy.
  • While some Members have used her nomination as an opportunity to raise their objections to the Administration, these arguments have nothing to do with U.S. Attorney Lynch’s qualifications to be our top law enforcement officer.
    • She will make an outstanding Attorney General and should be swiftly confirmed by the Senate.

U.S. Attorney Lynch has earned respect and admiration from a broad range of colleagues in the legal and law enforcement communities because of her tough and thoughtful use of her position.

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