Ambitious leftists with legal training always pursue at least two paths. They vote "present" on tough bills; they are "for it before they were against it;" and they would have voted with the majority if it was close, but thought the minority had the better argument.
Senate Republicans shouldn't be intimidated when it comes time to question Elena Kagan and vote on her nomination to the Supreme Court. The public can't possibly know much about her, but already its verdict has turned negative. No doubt some people know about her history with military recruiters, but that must be a small minority at this point. So my guess is that voters' negative reactions are based mostly on the fact that she was the dean of Harvard Law School. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 41% of U.S. voters now hold a favorable opinion of Kagan but 47% view her unfavorably, up from 43% a week ago and 39% just after President Obama announced her nomination. ... With Senate hearings on Kagan's nomination set to begin June 28, 36% of voters now favor her confirmation, but 39% are opposed. One-out-of-four (25%) are undecided. Perhaps Ms. Kagan can sway some voters with a good performance before the Judiciary Committee, but I expect far more to turn negative when they learn about her defiance of the Solomon Amendment. Senate Republicans shouldn't be intimidated when it comes time to question Elena Kagan and vote on her nomination to the...
From the Harvard Law Record, via Ed Whelan, we learn that Elena Kagan considers Israeli supreme court justice Aharon Barak her "judicial hero." According to Kagan, Barak "is the judge who has best advanced democracy, human rights, the rule of law, and justice."
The thesis Elena Kagan wrote in 1983 as a graduate student at Oxford is now publicly available. The Washington Post touts it as being "critical of the Warren court" because Kagan argued that the Supreme Court's development of the exclusionary rule during the Warren years was not based on a "coherent theory" and thus "assured the rule's eventual demise
Professor chooses professor. That s one headline you could write about Barack Obama s nomination of Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court. Obama graduated from Harvard Law School in 1991, Kagan in 1986. Kagan joined the faculty at the University of Chicago Law School in 1991 and became a full professor there in 1995. Obama taught constitutional law there, though he was not formally a professor, from 1992 to 2004.
Yesterday, I noted that If Elena Kagan is confirmed, all three of the Supreme Court's female Justices will be from New York city. A reader adds that all three will also be former summer associates at the New York city law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. That firm declined, however, to offer Ruth Bader Ginsburg a job as a regular associate back in the bad old days when law firms discriminated on the basis of gender. To the best of my knowledge, neither Sonia Sotomayor nor Kagan was ever an associate with Paul Weiss either. However, this was by the choice of Sotomayor and Kagan, I assume.
One topic I would prefer not to write about is the recent flap over whether Elena Kagan, apparently a front-runner for the next Supreme Court nomination, is an "out" lesbian. This is the kind of story we'd rather not touch with a stick. Personally, I couldn't possibly care less about Kagan's romantic life. So we'd like to avert our eyes from the controversy. Unfortunately, it isn't that simple. The story began when Ben Domenech, blogging for CBS News, observed, apparently innocently, that Kagan's nomination would please the Democratic base because she would be the first openly gay Supreme Court nominee. This led the White House to denounce Domenech's post as a rumor campaign, and to assert flatly that Kagan is not gay, let alone openly so. CBS eventually deleted Domenech's blog post. But comments on Kagan's sexual orientation didn't start with Domenech; a number of gay and lesbian sites like "Queerty" had claimed Kagan as one of their own. Outside the Beltway has a good summary of the controversy. Here is the problem: we live, thanks to the Left, in an era of identity politics. The common political syllogism runs, Mr. X is a member of group Y. Therefore he has political interests in common with other members of group Y and is entitled to certain benefits as a member of group Y. Worse, Democrats commonly hold that members of their constituent identity groups are obliged to favor political and judicial policies that advance the presumed interests of those groups. See, for example, the way they talk about Justice Thomas and Sarah Palin. It's actually worse than that: the liberals' theory of jurisprudence holds that membership in favored or disfavored groups should dictate the extent of one's legal rights. Thus, for example, Goodwin Liu argues that descendants of white