Kathryn Ruemmler withdraws from consideration to succeed Eric Holder as AG

“We can confirm the president asked Kathy to consider this, and she was among those the president had been looking at,” said a White House official who asked for anonymity in a written statement, referring to the search to replace retiring Attorney General Eric Holder. “Kathy took this step this week on her own volition—as she always has done, putting the president and the administration first.”

The Associated Press first broke the news Friday, reporting that Ruemmler recused herself as a candidate out of concern that it could prompt a contentious confirmation battle on Capitol Hill. Ruemmler, a close confidant of the president who left her post earlier this year to return to private practice in New York, was a fierce defender of executive privilege on controversial issues ranging from the attack at Benghazi to the Internal Revenue Service’s targeting of conservative groups.