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Sessions Lashes Out at MoveOn and NAACP After More Than 180,000 People Sign Petition Overnight Opposing His Nomination Due to His Long Racist Record

MoveOn Petition Was Circulated by Alabama NAACP President Benard Simelton, Who Was Arrested in Civil Disobedience at Sessions’ Office Tuesday

MoveOn Also Released New Video Featuring Leading Racial Justice, LGBTQ, and Immigrants’ Rights Advocates Opposing Sessions

After a MoveOn.org petition by Alabama NAACP President Benard Simelton opposing the Jeff Sessions attorney general nomination because of Sessions’ track record of racism gathered more than 180,000 signatures overnight, a Sessions spokesperson lashed out in response this morning but failed to address the substance of the concerns.

The petition notes that Sessions is a “known racist with a long record of opposing civil rights and equality,” arguing “it is unimaginable that he could be entrusted to serve as the nation’s top law enforcement official.”

Sessions spokesperson Sarah Isgur Flores responded by claiming to the Washington Examiner that the petition was a “false smear,” but failed to rebut the substance of concerns about Sessions’ long track record of opposing civil rights protections. Then, in a bizarre series of tweets, Flores asserted that opposition to Sessions is a “fundraising gimmick,” rather than acknowledging the truth that Sessions has a long history of opposing civil rights.

“As much as his team might try to distract the American public, Jeff Sessions can’t run or hide from his racist comments and votes. There is a reason more than 180,000 Americans have signed this petition calling for Sessions’ rejection in less than 24 hours, and it is the same reason the Senate rejected his nomination to the federal judiciary decades ago—Sessions’ track record of racism and the fact that he has been an avid opponent of civil rights and human rights mean he is an unqualified nominee,” said MoveOn.org Campaign Director Jamiah Adams. “It’s no surprise that Sessions’ team is desperate to draw attention from his indefensible record by making baseless attacks on the civil rights groups that universally oppose his nomination. If Sessions is actually forced to address his long and disturbing history of opposition to civil rights, it will become clear that he should not be confirmed.”

To underscore the substance of concerns across the civil rights community about the Sessions nomination, MoveOn today released a new video featuring leading racial justice, LGBTQ, and immigrants’ rights advocates addressing his record.

Watch the new MoveOn video

“Instead of lashing out at and trying to smear the committed Americans with legitimate and profound concerns about his nomination, Sessions should acknowledge that his track record of opposition to civil rights makes him unfit to be attorney general and withdraw his nomination,” Adams said. “And if Sessions is concerned about ‘gimmicks,’ perhaps he should start with his false attempt to claim credit for civil rights work he barely had anything to do with in an attempt to obfuscate his dismal record on civil rights.”

View the petition here: http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/stop-jeff-sessions

 

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