On June 29, President Donald Trump nominated Eric S. Dreiband to be the Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights in the Department of Justice. Created by the Civil Rights Act of 1957, the Civil Rights Division is charged with upholding “the civil and constitutional rights of all Americans, particularly some of the most vulnerable members of our society.” The Division’s work includes, among other things, enforcing federal antidiscrimination laws, investigating civil rights violations by police departments, prosecuting and preventing hate crimes, protecting voting rights, and ensuring equal access to housing and education. The Civil Rights Division, in other words, is responsible for protecting and building upon our hard-fought progress to become a more inclusive and just society, and it requires a leader with a proven commitment to those ideals.
Dreiband’s nomination, however, continues the Trump administration’s disturbing trend of retreating from — if not outright undermining — fundamental civil rights priorities. Dreiband has devoted most of his career to defending corporations in employment discrimination cases and advocating for weaker antidiscrimination protections in the workplace. He also has a troubling lack of experience, having done no significant work in other issue areas central to the Division’s mission, including urgent priorities like voting rights and policing reform.
Read the full post to learn more about President Trump’s pick.