- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 12, 2009

WASHINGTON (AP)David Ogden is probably headed for confirmation as deputy attorney general, although several conservatives oppose him because he has represented defendants in pornography cases.

The Senate Democratic majority is behind Ogden, and he has the support of at least three Republicans. The Senate was to vote on Ogden on Thursday.

The nomination by President Barack Obama to be Attorney General Eric Holder’s top aide sparked an angry Senate debate over Ogden’s legal career.

Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., one of the opponents, said Ogden “is more than just a lawyer who has had a few unsavory clients. He has devoted a substantial part of his career, case after case, for twenty years, in defense of pornography.”

Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., said he was “alarmed that President Obama has nominated a candidate to serve in the No. 2 post at the Department of Justice who has repeatedly represented the pornography industry and its interests.”



During his Senate confirmation hearing last month, Ogden sought to reassure senators that he would prosecute child pornographers aggressively, and he urged the lawmakers not to judge him by arguments he made on behalf of his past clients.

“Child pornography is abhorrent,” Ogden said, adding later, “Issues of children and families have always been of great importance to me.”

While a private attorney, Ogden argued on behalf of Playboy and librarians fighting congressionally mandated Internet filtering software.

Sen. Patrick Leahy, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said “special interests on the far right have distorted Mr. Ogden’s record by focusing only on a narrow sliver of his diverse practice as a litigator that spans more than three decades.”

Leahy, D-Vt., said that during previous service in the Justice Department, Ogden “aggressively defended” the constitutionality of the Child Online Protection Act and the Child Pornography Prevention Act of 1996.

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