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Attorney General Eric Holder to resign

Attorney General Eric Holder plans to announce his resignation Thursday, though he will stay in the Justice Department until a successor is in place, according to NPR. NBC's Pete Williams confirmed the news.

Holder, the nation's first black attorney general, has served in the Obama administration since 2009. In April he became the fourth-longest serving attorney general in U.S. history.

During his tenure, Holder pushed back against states that sought to curtail voting rights, and called for lighter sentences for those convicted of minor drug offenses. But he also proved controversial, irking some on the right who accused him of playing racial politics. In the most significant dustup, Holder came under fire for deciding to try terrorists accused of plotting the 9/11 attacks in federal, not military, court. Under pressure, he later reversed course.