Dianne Feinstein resigns as Chief Democrat on Senate Judiciary American news

California Senator Dianne Feinstein does not want to retain the top Democratic position on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

“After working as a senior Democrat on the Justice Committee for four years, I will not seek the presidency or rankings at the next Congress,” Feinstein said in a statement Monday.

“California is a huge state facing two existential threats – wildfire and drought – that are only getting worse with climate change. At the next congress, I plan to increase my attention to these two key issues, ”he added.

Dick Durbin, an Illinois senator and Democrat whip, said he would look for the job.

“At the 117th Congress, I want to seek the supreme democratic position of the Judiciary Committee. I’ve been a member of the committee for 22 years and I’m the oldest member who doesn’t currently serve on top of another senate committee, ”he said. “We need to raise our fingers and start tackling the damage of the last four years and protecting fundamental civil and human rights.”

After dealing with Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court affirmation, 87-year-old Feinstein withdrew from the Judiciary Committee with increased calls from advanced.

Feinstein closed the controversial hearings with the full-body embrace of Lindsey Graham, the Republican chairman of the committee, praising the process as “one of the best hearings I’ve attended,” despite many other Democrats complaining about Republicans approaching Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s late justice seat .

Brian Fallon, executive director of Demand Justice, argued that Feinstein “undermined the position of Democrats” during the hearings. Naral Pro-Choice America’s leading reproductive rights group Feinstein “spoke out wildly against the American people,” saying “the committee needs new leadership”.

Feinstein also outraged some Democrats at Barrett’s first affirmative hearing in an appellate court in 2017 when he said he should be rooted in the religion of Barrett’s opposition to abortion, and questioned whether this would influence his decisions on the bench, saying doged aloud b ”.

Republicans have grasped the term, saying it is offensive to Catholics. The repercussions helped Barrett in the ranks of top court hopefuls.

Feinstein ran a long career in politics. He became mayor of San Francisco in 1978 following the assassination of activist Harvey Milk and mayor George Moscone. He has been working in the U.S. Senate since 1992 and has played an important role in CIA torture investigations during the wars in the Middle East as former chairman of the intelligence committee. He was facing a difficult primary race in 2018 when the California Democratic Party voted for his opponent’s approval.

Feinstein said he continues to plan to serve the judiciary, appropriations and intelligence agencies, but is not looking for the role of supreme democrats in either.

Senate Democrat leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement that he is “grateful for Senator Feinstein’s leadership and contribution to our government and our country” in the judiciary.

Vivian Ho contributed to the report