Senators File to Stop Whitaker from Serving as Acting Attorney General

After Maryland’s challenge to Matthew Whitaker’s appointment as Acting Attorney General, on November 19, 2018, Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Mazie Hirono (D-HI), filed a suit in DC Federal District Court against Matthew Whitaker and Donald Trump.

The three Democratic senators argue that Whitaker’s appointment violated the Appointment Clause of the Constitution because he was not confirmed by the Senate to serve as a principal Officer of the United States or to serve in any other position requiring the advice and consent of the Senate. They further argue that “By designating Mr. Whitaker to perform the functions and duties of the Attorney General without having been subject to Senate confirmation, President Trump has unlawfully denied the Plaintiffs their right, as sitting U.S. Senators, to vote on whether to consent to his appointment to that role.” (Compl. ¶ 32.)

The senators ask the court to enjoin Whitaker from performing the functions and duties of the office of Attorney General of the United States as Acting Attorney General.