Holder Could Still Reach #3 Attorney General Tenure Mark

If his successor is not confirmed by December 5th, Holder will pass Homer Cummings for third place on the all-time tenure list

ericholder10.jpgIn February of this year, Smart Politics reported on how Eric Holder was quickly climbing up the list of the longest-serving Attorney Generals in U.S. history.

At that time, on the anniversary of completing his fifth full year in the position, Holder ranked #5 in all-time service.

Holder subsequently passed Charles Lee on April 29th for fourth place.

Lee served 5 years, 2 months, 22 days under George Washington and John Adams from 1795 to 1801.

Today, Holder announced that he will resign from office once his successor is confirmed – a process which could take many weeks.

Through Thursday, Holder has served 5 years, 7 months, and 22 days as Attorney General.

If, however, the nomination and confirmation process is drawn out, Holder could still end up with the third longest tenure of the nearly seven-dozen individuals to serve in his position since the 18th Century.

Next on the list for Holder is Homer Cummings (1933-1939).

Cummings served 5 years, 9 months, 29 days during Franklin Roosevelt’s first two terms.

Holder would pass Cummings in all-time service on December 5, 2014.

With his last day in office a matter of weeks or months away, Holder will not be able to catch Janet Reno at #2 (7 years, 10 months, 8 days).

Holder would have passed Reno on December 16, 2016.

The all-time record holder for the position is William Wirt at 11 years, 3 months, 16 days – Attorney General in the administrations of James Monroe and John Quincy Adams.

The average length of service of the 82 men and women who have served in the office since the 1700s is approximately two years and nine months.

Top 10 Longest-Serving U.S. Attorney Generals

Rank
#
Name
Took Office
Left Office
Years
Months
Days
Days
1
9
William Wirt
Nov 15, 1817
Mar 3, 1829
11
3
16
4,126
2
78
Janet Reno
Mar 12, 1993
Jan 20, 2001
7
10
8
2,871
3
55
Homer Cummings
Mar 4, 1933
Jan 2, 1939
5
9
29
2,130
4
82
Eric Holder
Feb 3, 2009
In office*
5
7
22
2,060
5
3
Charles Lee
Dec 10, 1795
Mar 4, 1801
5
2
22
1,910
6
6
Caesar Rodney
Jan 20, 1807
Dec 5, 1811
4
10
15
1,780
7
62
Herbert Brownell, Jr.
Jan 21, 1953
Nov 8, 1957
4
9
18
1,752
8
12
Benjamin Butler
Nov 18, 1833
Aug 31, 1838
4
9
13
1,747
9
49
Thomas Gregory
Sep 3, 1914
Mar 4, 1919
4
6
1
1,643
10
74
William F. Smith
Jan 23, 1981
Feb 23, 1985
4
1
0
1,492

* Through September 25, 2014. Excludes service as Acting Attorney General. Table compiled by Smart Politics.

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