Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, on Wednesday called the Senate's rejection of President Barack Obama's nominee to lead the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division the "lowest point" of his 30-year career.
"I don't say that lightly," Harkin said. "I was here during the impeachment process, trial for President [Bill] Clinton. I kind of thought that was a sham, but that didn't compare to what happened today."
Harkin, the sixth-longest serving member in the 113th Congress, criticized the Senate for what he called an "emotional vote."
"I will not name any names, but I had one senator say, 'my head tells me that he should be confirmed but my guts, my emotions say no.' Shame, on all of us here; especially the lawyers."
Obama's pick, Debo P. Adegbile, was the first nominee blocked since Democrats invoked the "nuclear option" in November.