53 Facts About Eric Holder

1. Eric Holder was senior legal advisor to Barack Obama during Obama's presidential campaign and one of three members of Obama's vice-presidential selection committee.

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2. Eric Holder was a close ally and confidant of Obama's and was selected as President Obama's first Attorney General.

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3. Eric Holder became the first sitting attorney general to be held in contempt of Congress during an investigation of the Operation Fast and Furious ATF gunwalking scandal.

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4. Eric Holder was succeeded as attorney general by Loretta Lynch in April 2015.

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5. Eric Holder grew up in East Elmhurst, Queens, and attended public school until the age of 10.

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6. Eric Holder received his JD degree from Columbia Law School, graduating in 1976.

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7. Eric Holder worked for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund during his first summer and the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York during his second summer.

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8. In 1969, while a freshman at Columbia, Eric Holder was one of several dozen students who staged an occupation of the Reserve Officers' Training Corps office, renaming it as the Malcolm X student center.

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9. Eric Holder stepped down from the bench in 1993 to accept an appointment as United States Attorney for the District of Columbia from President Bill Clinton.

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10. Eric Holder was the first Black American US Attorney in that office.

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11. Eric Holder was a US Attorney until his elevation to Deputy Attorney General in 1997.

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12. Eric Holder served on The George Washington University's Board of Trustees in 1996 and 1997.

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13. Eric Holder said that the current laws placed major constraints on the ability of federal investigators and prosecutors to assist in these types of cases.

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14. Eric Holder represented the NFL during its dog fighting investigation against Michael Vick.

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15. In 2004, Eric Holder helped negotiate an agreement with the Justice Department for Chiquita Brands International in a case that involved Chiquita's payment of "protection money" to the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia, a group on the US government's list of foreign terrorist organizations.

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16. In late 2007, Eric Holder joined then-Senator Barack Obama's presidential campaign as a senior legal advisor.

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17. Eric Holder was formally nominated on January 20, 2009, and was overwhelmingly approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee on January 28 with a bipartisan vote of 17 to 2.

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18. Eric Holder was officially confirmed by the entire Senate on February 2, 2009, by a vote of 75 to 21 becoming the nation's first African-American Attorney General.

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19. Matt Olsen, the director of the National Counterterrorism Center from 2011 to 2014, wrote in 2015: "Through his persistence, Eric Holder demonstrated the wisdom and value of prosecuting terrorists in civilian courts and cemented this approach for future administrations.

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20. Eric Holder said at the time that the five would "stand trial in our justice system before an impartial jury under long-established rules and procedures.

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21. In July 2010, Eric Holder attended a heads of state summit of the African Union in Kampala, Uganda, where he told African leaders that the US would continue to support the African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia.

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22. Eric Holder vowed to work closer with African officials to stop terrorism, and announced that the FBI would be providing a team of forensic specialists to help assist in the investigation of the terrorist bombings in Kampala during the World Cup.

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23. Eric Holder is a vocal proponent of defending the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which was reauthorized in 2006 with bipartisan support.

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24. In 2011, Eric Holder said, "The reality is that in jurisdictions across the country, both overt and subtle forms of discrimination remain all too common.

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25. Eric Holder went on to say that "We have to honor the generations that took extraordinary risks" to achieve the right to vote.

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26. Eric Holder said, "Many of those without IDs would have to travel great distances to get them – and some would struggle to pay for the documents they might need to obtain them.

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27. In May 2010, Eric Holder expressed concerns over reports he had received regarding Arizona SB 1070, an Arizona immigration law.

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28. In July 2010, after the DOJ reviewed the law, Eric Holder filed suit against Arizona on the grounds that the state law is preempted by federal law.

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29. Eric Holder was quoted as saying, "I understand, first off, the frustration of the people of Arizona and the concerns that they have with regard to the amount of illegal immigration that occurs, but the solution that the Arizona legislature came up with is inconsistent with our federal Constitution.

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30. In February 2011, Eric Holder announced that the DOJ would no longer defend cases involving the Defense of Marriage Act in court.

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31. Eric Holder cited changing law in support of his action: "Much of the legal landscape has changed in the 15 years since Congress passed DOMA.

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32. In May 2011, Eric Holder set aside the decision to deport Paul Dorman, an Irish man who was in a same-sex partnership with a New Jersey citizen.

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33. Eric Holder issued a statement reading: "After careful review, I have concluded that certain information should have been provided to the defense for use at trial.

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34. Eric Holder was praised for his efforts to repair the damage caused by the affair, which was seen as "a profound embarrassment for the Justice Department.

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35. Eric Holder said his Deputy Attorney General, James Cole was in charge of the AP investigation and would've ordered the subpoenas.

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36. In 2009, Eric Holder announced and oversaw the federal government spending of $1 billion in grants to law enforcement agencies in every state to pay for the hiring of police officers.

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37. In May 2016, more than a year after leaving office, Eric Holder told David Axelrod in an interview he thought Edward Snowden had "performed a public service by raising the debate that we engaged in and by the changes that we made", adding "I would say that doing what he did—and the way he did it—was inappropriate and illegal".

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38. Eric Holder gave a speech on racism on February 18, 2009, during Black History Month.

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39. On June 19, 2012, Eric Holder met with Issa in person to discuss the requested documents.

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40. Eric Holder said he offered to provide the documents to Issa on the condition that Issa provided his assurance that doing so would satisfy the committee subpoenas and resolve the dispute.

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41. In September 2012, after a nineteen-month review, the United States Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General cleared the Attorney General of any wrongdoing with regard to Fast and Furious, stating that there was "no evidence" that Eric Holder knew about the operation before early 2011.

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42. Responsibility remains so diffuse, and top executives so insulated," Eric Holder said, "that any misconduct could again be considered more a symptom of the institution's culture than a result of the willful actions of any single individual.

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43. Eric Holder announced his resignation on September 25, 2014, citing personal reasons.

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44. In early 2016, Eric Holder was hired by the MTN Group, a South Africa-based telecommunications company as a part of its efforts to combat a $3.9 billion fine handed to the MTN Group by the government of Nigeria.

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45. In October 2018, Eric Holder was one of multiple individuals targeted by mailed pipe-bombs sent to Democratic lawmakers and officials.

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46. On March 4, 2019, Eric Holder announced that he would not seek the White House in 2020 but would continue his work with the National Democratic Redistricting Committee to help elect a Democratic candidate who had the five qualities he thought were necessary.

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47. Eric Holder is an avid basketball fan and the uncle of former NBA All-Star Jeff Malone.

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48. On May 16, 2010, Eric Holder delivered the commencement address at Boston University, for both the all-university ceremony and the School of Law.

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49. On May 22, 2011, Eric Holder delivered the commencement address at the University of Virginia School of Law.

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50. On May 19, 2009, Eric Holder was chosen by his alma mater, Columbia College, to be its Class Day Speaker.

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51. In May 2009, Eric Holder visited Barbados and met with government representatives from across the Caribbean.

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52. At the announcement of the project it was announced that Eric Holder was the first candidate nominated for the final list.

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53. Eric Holder delivered the commencement address at Harvard Law School in May 2012, the UC Berkeley School of Law in May 2013, and the UCLA School of Law in June 2020.

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