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Garland Sworn in As Attorney General, Vows to Restore Faith in DOJ

Attorney General Merrick Garland is sworn in. Photo via DOJ.

By Steve Neavling

Attorney General Merrick Garland was sworn-in Thursday and pledged to “adhere to norms” and restore the Justice Department’s reputation for political independence. 

“We are united by our commitment to protecting our country as our oath says, ‘from all enemies, foreign and domestic.’ And by our commitment to enforcing our country’s laws and to ensuring the civil rights and the civil liberties of our people,” Garland said in an address to the DOJ’s 115,000 employees on his first day of work. “The only way we can succeed and retain the trust of the American people is to adhere to the norms that have become part of the DNA of every Justice Department employee since Edward Levi’s stint as the first post-Watergate attorney general.” 

He concluded the speech by saying, “I am honored to work with you once again. Together, we will show the American people by word and deed that the Department of Justice pursues equal justice and adheres to the rule of law.”

Read Garland’s full speech here.

The Senate confirmed Garland on Wednesday with a 70-30 vote. 

Garland, 68, rose to national prominence in 2016 when President Obama nominated him to the U.S. Supreme Court, but Republicans denied him a hearing. 

Garland was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 1997. 

Garland is a graduate of Harvard University’s college and law school. 


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