- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 11, 2018

The Senate on Thursday voted 50 to 47 to confirm Eric Dreiband as the new assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.

Currently a partner at Jones Day, Mr. Dreiband will now lead the Justice Department unit that enforces anti-bias laws, voting rights and investigates police civil rights cases.

Eric has distinguished himself as an outstanding lawyer and a committed public servant,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions. said. “His previous experience in protecting the civil and constitutional rights of all individuals will enable him to effectively lead the Civil Rights Division.”

Mr. Dreiband, a former attorney at the Equal Opportunity Commission under President George W. Bush, represented the University of North Carolina in its defense of a law banning transgender people from using the bathroom they say corresponds to their gender.

He also opposed the Fair Pay Act in 2008, which would have made it easier for women and others to sue their employer over unequal pay. The measure was eventually passed by President Obama in 2009.

Mr. Dreiband’s vote fell along party lines. Civil rights groups opposed the nomination, saying he defended corporations who were slapped with discrimination suits.

Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights called Mr. Dreiband the “wrong choice” to lead the Justice Department unit.

“This is particularly important at a time when civil rights are under constant attack by the Trump-Pence administration and its allies. Yet Dreiband has spent most of his career opposing important civil rights legislation and defending corporations who discriminate against their workers,” Ms. Gupta said in a statement before the vote.

But some on the right, supported Mr. Dreiband. Ahead of Thursday’s vote, Majority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, said he had a “strong commitment to protecting all American’s civil rights.”

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