NEW YORK, NY – Today, Color Of Change, the nation’s largest online racial justice organization, delivered a petition with over 97,000 signatures to Senator Chuck Schumer’s office, urging the Senate Judiciary Committee to oppose the confirmation of Jeff Sessions as Attorney General, citing his long history of racially charged comments and actions. Senator Schumer, Senate Minority Leader and a longtime member of the Judiciary Committee, has already taken steps to open a dialogue with the dozens of civil rights groups, hundreds of legal scholars, and countless other Americans who have united to oppose the Sessions nomination.

Sessions has a long, disturbing history of racism. He has called a Black federal prosecutor “boy,” falsely prosecuted Black political activists, fought to repeal the voting rights of Black Americans, and made offhand jokes about his support of the Klu Klux Klan. In 1976, a Republican-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee failed to confirm Sessions for a federal judgeship precisely because of his well-documented racism.

Statement from Rashad Robinson; Executive Director of Color Of Change:

“History speaks for itself: Jeff Sessions is a racist. Thirty years ago, a Republican-controlled Senate committee determined that Sessions’ track record of racism made him unfit for a federal judgeship. Now in 2017, Sessions has been nominated for one of the most important roles in our federal government and the stakes are even higher. As Attorney General, Sessions would be responsible for leading the Department of Justice and defending our most fundamental rights before the Supreme Court, yet he has proven time and time again that he is no friend to Black communities and other Americans whose rights come under attack.

“We urge all members of the Judiciary Committee, Republican and Democrat alike, to reject the nomination of a man who is wholly unfit to serve as the guardian of our constitutional rights. Anyone who supports Sessions’ nomination is enabling racism and discrimination. Based on his history, we have every reason to expect that Sessions, if confirmed, would to use the power of his position to encroach on the freedoms so many of us hold dear. Make no mistake, a vote for Sessions is a vote for racism and bigotry and the weakening of American values.”

Statement from Angelo Roefaro, Spokesperson for Senator Chuck Schumer:

“We are very pleased to meet with Color of Change to receive their petition and to discuss the reasons to oppose the nomination of Jeff Sessions for Attorney General. We look forward to remaining in conversation with COC on this matter and many others as we work to preserve progressive policies and confront significant challenges in the months and years to come.”