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Specter: Marc Rich will be issue
|Last Edited||Scott³ Nov 20, 2008 09:21pm|
|News Date||Thursday, November 20, 2008 03:00:00 AM UTC0:0|
"Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, said Wednesday that former President Bill Clinton’s pardon of Marc Rich will be an issue in a potential confirmation hearing for Eric Holder to become attorney general .
“We're going to take a very, very close look at his record,” Specter said in an interview on MSNBC.
Specter said that he will examine Holder’s role in the final days of the Clinton administration “with focus on the Marc Rich pardon, where there had been very, very large contributions.”
“Rich was a fugitive,” he said. “They did not follow regular order. And we'll want to know, in some detail, as to what Mr. Holder had to do with that.”
Specter said that he is unlikely to hold up Holder’s nomination over the issue, but insisted that “it is an issue that has to be inquired into.”
The Republican said he intends to move quickly on all the confirmation hearings, promising to “move into the substance of the matter, ask the important questions, look for any documents that might be relevant. And as fast as we can move through, I'm prepared to decide it one way or another. I wouldn't hold it up.”
Specter praised President-elect Barack Obama’s reported pick of former Sen. Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) as secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, but said the former senator will also be subject to tough scrutiny.
“I think it's a very good nomination. I know former Senator Daschle very well,” he said. “I don't think there are any skeletons in Tom Daschle's closet. But I want to open the closet door to see.”
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