Mukasey Faces Uncertain Vote

Attorney General nominee on thin ice with Democrats
By Will McCahill,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 31, 2007 7:02 PM CDT
Attorney General-designate Michael Mukasey prepares to testify on Capitol Hill in Washington in this Oct. 18, 2007 file photo, on the second day of his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – A vote that could send the nomination of Michael Mukasey as US attorney general to the full Senate will come Tuesday, the Democrat in charge of the Senate Judiciary Committee said today. Once thought certain, Mukasey's confirmation now appears to hinge on his refusal to classify as illegal torture the technique known as waterboarding, the Washington Post reports.

Mukasey has stopped short of declaring waterboarding—a technique simulating drowning whose use has been endorsed by previous Justice rulings—illegal, but he said he considers it "repugnant." Three of the committee's 10 Democrats—Biden, Durbin, and Whitehouse—have said they would vote against Mukasey. He likely needs the vote of one of the remaining seven Democrats to win panel approval.