Cynical Synapse

Mon, 05 Jul 2010

Just Who Is Elana Kagan?

Filed under: Government, Legal, Politics, Take action — cynicalsynapse @ 8:10 pm

People need jobs

So far, in hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Supreme Court nominee Elana Kagan revealed practically nothing on her views on any topic.

Nonetheless, I have to give Kagan credit for understanding the law of land warfare and its implications with enemy combatants. That’s something her predecessor, Attorney General Eric Holder, failed to fully understand. Kagan’s answers to Sen. Linsay Graham’s questions demonstrate a sound grasp of the nature of the threat, the law of war, the need for military detention and military commissions.

Hon. Alena Kagan

During confirmation for Solicitor General—head of the Justice Department—Kagan told Senators she would uphold the laws of the United States, no matter her beliefs. That’s very similar to what she’s saying during confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court. But is Kagan true to her word? The problem is, we don’t know. She has no experience on the bench. And, Kagan declined any insight into her views during confirmation hearings.

How can a Senator confirm a nominee who declined to provide any insight into how she would perform? She attempted to veil her answer to specific questions. In response to an angered Sen. Arlen Spector (D-DA), Kagan replied:

You shouldn’t want a judge who will sit at this table and who will tell you that she will reverse a decision without listening to arguments, and without reading briefs, and without talking to colleagues.

US Supreme Court Justices

While I get that, Kagan was actually trying to hide her judicial viewpoint. While many believe she was successful, Kagan actually telegraphed her views on several topics.

  • She’s not an “umpire” or a robot
  • She’s not a strict constructionist
  • She won’t rule out a federal “eat your vegetables” law
  • She subscribes to a “doctrine of humility
  • She may not believe people have a God-given right to gun ownership
  • She has a quick wit
  • She won’t take a stand on Vampire v. Werewolf
  • Oddly, she enjoys confirmation hearings

Personally, I’m opposed to Supreme Court candidates who don’t have any experience on the bench. That’s kind of like saying a nominee for the Joint Chiefs of Staff doesn’t really need to be a member of the military. Well, not only does Kagan not have judicial experience, but she did her best to hide what kind of Justice she would be. In my mind, she’s neither qualified nor trustworthy. Tell your Senator to vote no on Elana Kagan’s confirmation to the the Supreme Court.


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