By Evan Perez
The Senate voted 99-1 on Tuesday to confirm John Carlin as assistant attorney general for national security, a job that has been vacant for more than a year.
The time it took to fill the post illustrates how, with a slow-moving bureaucracy in the White House and partisan bickering that occupies the Senate, even noncontroversial nominees for national security jobs can take a while.
Carlin has led the office since Lisa Monaco left in March 2013 to become President Barack Obama's top counterterrorism adviser. President Obama nominated Carlin in September.
The job in the past year has been dominated by controversies over government surveillance in the wake of leaks by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden. Carlin's office provides legal oversight of the NSA's surveillance activities and represents the government before the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.
Attorney General Eric Holder said of Carlin: “Throughout his tenure, he has repeatedly demonstrated the skill, foresight and vision that this position demands. I am confident that under his leadership, the National Security Division will continue to strengthen and advance its critical mission to safeguard the American people and protect this nation.”