Former Clinton Deputy Attorney General Eric Holder is President-elect Barack Obama’s choice for the position of attorney general, according to two prominent Democrats involved in transition matters.
Holder, who is still being vetted, has indicated he will accept the job if it is offered, the sources said.
If confirmed, Holder would be the first African-American to lead the Justice Department.
Holder, 57, co-chaired President-elect Obama‘s vice presidential selection process. A graduate of Columbia University and former federal prosecutor, he is a partner at the Washington law firm of Covington & Burling.
Holder first joined the Justice Department in the administration of President Jimmy Carter, assigned to the newly formed Public Integrity Section in 1976 straight out of Columbia University Law School.
President Ronald Reagan nominated him to be an associate judge at the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, where he served for five years.
He left that post to become the first African-American U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, chosen by President Bill Clinton. He served in that position until Clinton picked him to become deputy attorney general, the first African American to hold that position as well.
Four former Justice Department Democrats who worked for Holder during that time said they were pleased with the news that Holder would likely be attorney general, and all hinted that they may be willing to return to the department.