Republicans line up to oppose Kagan

Utah Senate Orrin Hatch: He opposes Kagan nomination

Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan drew opposition Friday from Republican leader Mitch McConnell and two other GOP senators, raising the prospect of a confirmation largely along party lines.

“The American people expect a justice who will impartially apply the law, not one who will be a rubberstamp for the Obama administration or any other administration,” McConnell said in a written statement one day after Kagan, 50, wrapped up three days of testimony before the Senate Judiciary 0Committee.

Democrats hold a 59-41 majority in the Senate, and Kagan’s confirmation is widely viewed as a certainty, barring an unexpected decision by Republicans to try and prevent a final vote. The Judiciary Committee is scheduled to vote on the appointment on July 13.

Kagan served as an aide in Bill Clinton’s White House and is currently solicitor general in President Barack Obama’s Justice Department. She testified this week she would be able to put her political views aside if confirmed to the high court, and make rulings based on the Constitution.

In a written statement, McConnell quoted Kagan as telling the Senate Judiciary Committee this week it is “difficult to take off the advocate’s hat and put on the judge’s hat.”

The statement added, “That difficulty is particularly acute for someone like Ms. Kagan, who has spent so much of her adult life practicing the art of political advocacy rather than practicing law.”

Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, a senior Republican and member of the committee that conducted confirmation hearings, also announced his opposition, as did Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, who holds a leadership position.

Hatch voted last year to confirm Kagan as solicitor general, a post in which she has appeared before the Supreme Court representing the administration.

But he said a Supreme Court nominee needs “both legal experience and, more importantly, the appropriate judicial philosophy.” And he said that “General Kagan regrettably does not meet this standard.”

Murkowski said Kagan also did not give Americans any idea how she will approach “difficult cases” as a justice.

In the past five years, confirmation proceedings for Supreme Court nominees have shown a decided partisan tinge.

Chief Justice John Roberts, appointed by President George W. Bush, was confirmed 78-22 in 2005, and Democrats cast all the votes in opposition. The following year, Justice Samuel Alito was approved 58-42, with all but four Democrats opposed.

Obama’s first pick for the court, Justice Sonia Sotomayor, was approved last year on a vote of 68-31. All of the votes in opposition were cast by Republicans.

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Associated Press writer Jesse J. Holland contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press

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6 Responses to "Republicans line up to oppose Kagan"

  1. paulb6  July 4, 2010 at 6:53 am

    I agree with them, she is not trustworthy,typical democrat like sotomeyer

    • guardhouse lawyer  July 5, 2010 at 4:33 pm

      What exactly do you want her to have said in order for you to consider her “trustworthy”?Put another way, what has she said that is not trustworthy?

      Direct quotes from the candidate would be appreciated.

  2. Terryeo  July 4, 2010 at 1:51 pm

    Hatch said a Supreme Court nominee needs “ the appropriate judicial philosophy.” And he said that “General Kagan regrettably does not meet this standard.”

    Finally, near the end of the article, DAVID ESPO raises his central criteria. Camouflaged by excess phrases, he implies that Kagan lacks an “appropriate judicial philosophy.”

    A judge’s job description is first, understand established law. Having done so, then apply law to an individual case. In this second action a judge is aided (or some would say, swayed) by opposing teams of attorneys.

    Kagan’s track record is an epitome of understanding where elements law apply to situations. Nearly as important, her record has her working with varying views but reconciling the salient points of those views.

    • jim0001  July 5, 2010 at 11:41 am

      As long as those views are the same as hers….That is the fear, that she will not follow the Constitution. Look no farther than the recent 2nd Amendment fight. Our SCOUS was split 5-4 on whether the 2nd Ammendment to the Constitution and one of the Bill of Rights applied to the People / States. Look at how Justice “Poor Sonya has had a hard life and deserves to be a Supreme Court justice” voted! Not in favor of the Constitution but she voted her liberal party views. She never answered any questions when she had her confirmation either.

      • guardhouse lawyer  July 5, 2010 at 4:38 pm

        So what you are saying is that anyone who disagrees with you is not following the Constitution. The word hubris comes to mind. Why would a vote aigainst the views of the NRA be a vote “Not in favor of the Constitution”?

        • jim0001  July 6, 2010 at 9:58 am

          I said nary a word about “disagreeing with me”. I will try to clarify my statements for you. Obviously you didn’t read or didn’t comprehend my response to Terryeo. The Constitution of the United States of America is finite in affirming “certain unalienable rights “. The first ten amendments are called the “Bill of Rights” and guarantee individual freedoms, not the governments. Four members of SCOUS voted a traitoreous. tyranical vote and voted against freedom in general and specifically against individual freedom. You attempted to villify the NRA. This post is not about them and their membership who believe in the preservation of freedom. Their only stated goal is to protect the Second Amendment to the Constitution and thereby simultaneously protect guaranteed individual freedoms. I am not a lawyer nor a lawyer wannabe. I am an American citizen and know what individual freedoms the “bill of Rights” affirms for all Americans.
          Kagan if confirmed will be a shill for liberal democrats same as “Poor hard life Sonya” and will also attempt to legislate from the bench. She like Sotomeyer never answered the questions.

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