The Senate confirmed one of its own to be attorney general in President Donald Trump’s administration, approving Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions on Wednesday evening on a largely party-line vote.
The Senate voted 52-47 to confirm Sessions. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-West Virginia, was the lone Democrat to vote for him. Sessions did not vote.
The 70-year-old Sessions, an early endorser of Trump and a key policy adviser throughout his campaign, was first elected to the Senate in 1996. Sessions served two years as Alabama attorney general and 12 years as a U.S. Attorney for the southern district of Alabama.
The Senate failed to confirm Sessions for a federal judgeship in 1986 after damaging accusations of racism. Democrats raised many of those issues, including a letter from Coretta Scott King, to stop Sessions from being confirmed for attorney general, but failed to sway any of Sessions’ Republican colleagues in the Senate.
In an unprecedented move, Sen. Corey Booker, D-New Jersey, testified against Sessions in a committee hearing, marking the first time a sitting senator testified against another sitting senator for a Cabinet post.
The Democrats have not been able to stop any of Trump’s nominees. Vice President Mike Pence cast the tie-breaking vote for Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Tuesday.