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Senate confirms Oaklander to Justice Dept. post

By Josh Richman
Monday, April 20th, 2009 at 3:41 pm in General.

The U.S. Senate today voted 82-4 to confirm Oakland attorney Tony West as Assistant U.S. Attorney General in charge of the U.S. Department of Justice’s civil division, which represents the United States, its departments and agencies, members of Congress, Cabinet officers and other federal employees in a wide range of litigation.

West — most recently a litigation partner at Morrison & Foerster in San Francisco, and formerly a Clinton Administration Justice Department official; a federal prosecutor; and a special assistant California Attorney General tasked with troubleshooting difficult issues — is expected to be sworn in at the end of this week. Long a Democratic Party activist, he was California finance co-chairman for Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.

The confirmation comes as little surprise; his Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing last month went off without a hitch, and he tends to get rave reviews from those who know him.

UPDATE @ 4:03 P.M. — “I’m looking forward to this new role and the challenges that lie ahead,” West wrote in an e-mail sent out to friends and associates this afternoon, offering his thanks for their backing. “Your kind notes, words of encouragement and friendship were a great source of support during the confirmation process.”

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