Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) today announced that he will vote against Michael Mukasey’s attorney general nomination, “potentially derailing his confirmation.” “No American should need a classified briefing to determine whether waterboarding is torture,” said Leahy, who will hold a press conference later in the day. Four other Democrats on the panel have also said they will vote against Mukasey.
UPDATE: From Leahy’s statement:
I am eager to restore strong leadership and independence to the Department of Justice. I like Michael Mukasey. I wish that I could support his nomination. But I cannot. America needs to be certain and confident of the bedrock principle — deeply embedded in our laws and our values — that no one, not even the President, is above the law. Accordingly, when the Judiciary Committee considers this nomination on Tuesday, I must vote no on this nomination.