History Shorts: Elena Kagan Rises to the Bench

History Shorts: Elena Kagan Rises to the Bench

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If Elena Kagan were a man, would we be questioning her sexuality?

It’s common knowledge that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan is Jewish, and except for some handwringing over the fact that her appointment would mean the Court would be made up entirely of Jews and Catholics, her Jewish identity is a non-issue. Unlike the debates over Justice Sotomayor’s ethnicity, no one is worried that Kagan’s status as a “wise Jewess” will color her judgment. Her sexual orientation, however, is another story.

Everyone wants to know: “Is Elena Kagan gay?” The suspicion arises from the fact that Kagan is unmarried, does not have children, and while no one would dare admit it, I am willing to bet her short haircut is a part of the equation. So Is her staunch support of gay rights. Every “is she gay” story refers to her refusal as Dean of Harvard Law to allow military recruiters on the campus in protest of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. The obvious question is, “If she were a man, would anyone be questioning her sexuality?”

Because Elena Kagan has not married, has not had children, and has done so well professionally, her story does not fit the usual narrative for women (although it does describe the life choices of a growing percentage of American women). Apparently the only legitimate reason a woman would choose a career over a family is because she is a lesbian, right? Because deep down all women want to be wives and mothers, right? To deny that there is sexism at work here would be a gross miscalculation.

There is also underlying homophobia at work here. Elena Kagan’s gender presentation (namely her haircut) is not overtly feminine, and that alone is enough to raise suspicion for many. The rumors and speculations about Elena Kagan’s sexuality reflect the troublesome notion that non-feminine presentation in a woman is indicative of homosexuality. This is why the threat of being labeled gay is a common form of gender policing. There’s nothing like the “What are you, gay?” line to scare a man or woman back into a traditional gender presentation.

It’s not surprising to see right-wing, anti-gay groups like the American Family Association (AFA) respond with homophobia and hate, but they are not alone. The White House is denouncing the rumors about Kagan’s sexuality, arguing that it is slanderous to “accuse” her of such a thing. As Alex Pareene of Gawker rightfully asks, “Because lesbians are terrible?” Getting angry over “accusations” (now being gay is a crime?) isn’t a very GLBT-friendly approach to dealing with homophobic witch-hunts.

The other way to respond to the speculation is by not responding at all. Liberals seem to write off the questions about Elena Kagan’s sexuality as just another case of extreme right-wing prejudice. Since we don’t see a gay individual as threatening to our point of view, it’s easy to say “Who cares?” or “It doesn’t matter,” and dismiss the discussion out of hand. But should we? Arguing that a Supreme Court Justice’s sexual orientation “doesn’t matter” seems to invalidate queerness as a formative identity, suggesting it is not as important as one’s race, gender, religion, class, etc. If those things matter, shouldn’t sexual orientation?

Andrew Sullivan makes an interesting argument that the American people have the right to know where a Supreme Court Justice is coming from, and that a nominee’s sexual orientation should be public just like one’s racial or religious identity. The reality is that any identity, especially a minority identity, influences judgment and the way one perceives the world. President Obama believes, as do I, that this is a good thing.

What some people fail to realize is that while being gay informs one’s judgment, so does the experience of being straight. As Amanda Hess writes at The Sexist: “If Kagan were married to a man, there would not be any silence on the details of her family life. There would, however, be complete f***ing radio silence on the idea that her heterosexuality has any effect on her judgment on an issue like same-sex marriage.” Out of 111 Supreme Court Justices, 108 have been influenced by their experience as men and 108 by the experience of being white, and all 111 have been influenced by the experience of being straight (although a couple of them have also been rumored to be gay).

Frankly, it would be great to get some more diversity on the bench, especially regarding sexual orientation. But this is an imperfect world and it would be political suicide to come out during the Senate hearings. I look forward to the day when an openly gay individual could be nominated and confirmed to the Supreme Court, or any other high profile position in the U.S. government, but we are not there yet. Until that day, Elena Kagan’s privacy should be respected.

The sexual orientation of a potential Supreme Court Justice may be relevant, but the question of Elena Kagan’s sexuality and why it came about is still problematic. No matter how you twist it, it is sexist and homophobic to “cry lesbian” just because Kagan is a successful, career-driven, unmarried woman with short hair. It’s interesting that of her multiple identities, Kagan’s religious identity as a Jew is the most protected. Her gender and sexual orientation, however, are fair game for dirty politics.

Had Kagan been a man, she would not have been given confirmed so easily but being a Democrat and perceived as a left leaning liberal progressive made her confirmation be done without any investigation on her background. Her sexual orientation as a LGBT person wold only mean that if it were true then she would have to recuse herself from any LGBT issues brought before the Supreme Court due to lack of impartiality.

I would think that her sexual orientation, whatever it may be, is less important than her lack of jucicial experience and her approval of restrictions on free speech where it critizes the government. The US was founded, as the Declaration of Independence clearly shows, on criticism of the British government and its treatment of the colonists.

I don't think a person's sexual orientation makes one bit of difference to their ability to do their job. I can see Andrew Sullivan's argument that where Supreme Court nominees are coming from may influence how they vote. But I believe that there needs to be come boundary drawn that distinguishes what should be aired in public for these nominees and what should be private. Do we question known heterosexual nominees, to find out if they're into porn or have some weird fetish? Seems to me that a person's personal life should be left as just that - personal.

First, disclaimer: I am heterosexual, and I think the sexual orientation does not matter for this job (as for most others).

Now, I have a question: I've read that we are all somewhat bisexual. there are some (I forgot the exact numbers, say, 40%) purely heterosexual, some (say, 10%) purely homosexual, and the rest - fill in the spectrum in between. So, if a Supreme Court nominee were somewhere in the middle of that spectrum, would it bother anybody? What if the person were even married, but were unhappy in his/her heterosexual marriage and watched homosexual porn at night? Why the hell should this all matter except for playing dirty?

All the debate out there about whether Kagan should or should not be outed, or whether we think she should out herself (to take a stand or to preempt further ugly speculation) seems to miss a critical point: what does SHE want? what's important to HER? Doesn't she get to have a say and control over her own business? Why should she have to say anything for other people's sake? I know we're talking about a very public appointment here, but if she chooses to remain private and not politicize her sexuality one way or another, then for goodness sake, let's let her make that choice!

Nice post, Leah. In answer to the question you pose in your blog post title, check out this article in The Moderate Voice, Sex and the Supremes - Kagan is the Sixth "Maybe Gay" Nominee. Looks like the boys have had their share of scrutiny, too.

Elena Kagan: High Priestess of the Regulatory State

President Barack Obama chose U.S. Solicitor General Elena Kagan, who was on the top of everyone&rsquos predictive &ldquoshort list,&rdquo as a candidate for nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court. As an attorney, professor, White House counsel, Harvard Law School dean, and U.S. Solicitor General, Elena Kagan has led a charmed life in the law to this point.

Commentators wrinkle their brows about her alleged lack of a public record that would reveal her legal philosophy and her positions on issues. However, she has produced more than enough in print to allow us to infer her likely approach as a U.S. Supreme Court justice. That record reveals something that mainstream pundits will not admit, lest the real game be given away. Attorney Kagan adheres to a philosophy called &ldquolegal positivism&rdquo and applies its worldview to her interpretation of the U.S. Constitution. Through the lens of the legal positivist, law has no fixed truth, but must be re-invented and bent to fit the changing needs of society. She has also associated throughout her life with lawyers, judges, and politicians who favor that position.

Arbitrary and Capricious ?Outcome of Cases

Attorney Kagan&rsquos commitment to legal positivism portends a completely arbitrary outcome if she is placed on the High Court. If interpretation of the law is not based on the actual words in the statute or on the intent of the lawgiver, then the law comes to mean whatever the legal positivist wants it to be, and it can be changed at a whim. Expediency and the existence of a government edict are the only rules. Though this explanation reduces a complicated philosophy to a caricature, it illustrates the basic problem: In the view of modern jurists, law is not based on objective truth or even on the fact that words have meaning.

Application of this doctrine to Supreme Court cases means that a litigant cannot have the security of a predictable outcome, even when appealing to the plain meaning of the text of the Constitution. Since the actual words of the Constitution are no longer the basis for legal rulings, litigants experience arbitrary and capricious results, which shift with the political winds. Once in a while they get lucky, and the justices will incidentally agree that a phrase in the Constitution actually means what it says, such as the recent Heller decision, affirming an individual right to keep and bear arms. But the court may equally discard its plain meaning, such as when it upheld most of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law, in direct violation of the clear First Amendment language which says, &ldquoCongress shall make no law &hellip abridging the freedom of speech.&rdquo

An Exalted View of the Law

Another unstated premise of Elena Kagan&rsquos legal positivism is her exalted view of the nature of law, lawyers, and judges, which lies at the heart of why her nomination should not be approved. Her belief is that the law should address all human interactions in a modern regulatory state, and that lawyers and judges are the proper guides for this elitist vision of American life.

Attorney Kagan&rsquos extensive writing shows that she is in the grip of a big-government ideology that has done much to ruin the legal system and the entire political landscape. A 100-page piece that she wrote, which appeared in the University of Chicago Law Review, expounds her view. It is entitled &ldquoPrivate Speech, Public Purpose: The Role of Government Motive in First Amendment Doctrine.&rdquo

In that critically praised article, Professor (at that time) Kagan seems more concerned with justifications for hair-splitting minutia about government control of speech than with focusing on how to protect the freedom of speech from government intrusion, which is the purpose of the First Amendment. She rationalizes interference with free speech on many highly technical grounds that only a law professor could love.

One of many examples should suffice. In her article, she expounds at length about the so-called &ldquosecondary effects doctrine,&rdquo a hair-splitting that would likely provoke Madison to rush the Supreme Court bench with a poker if he were alive. Attorney Kagan describes that doctrine as follows: &ldquoFacially content-based regulations of speech that are justified without reference to the content of the regulated speech should be treated as if they made no facial distinctions on the basis of content.&rdquo To Professor Kagan, the motive for why the government is suppressing free speech is all important, and this allows hairs to be split to the microscopic level, and hordes of lawyers to be employed to do the splitting and inspecting.

Her belief in the efficacy of government is the nub of the matter. Whereas the Founders feared its power, Attorney Kagan explains, justifies, and embraces it. When a measure is passed into law, or a regulation is propounded by an agency, it becomes transcendent truth for Attorney Kagan.It should not be questioned, but followed and venerated as part of the holy writ that is law.

In a 141-page behemoth of an article in Harvard Law Review with 527 footnotes that she wrote in 2001, entitled &ldquoPresidential Administration,&rdquo Professor Kagan reveals her propensity to default to the regulatory state in almost all situations. In the article, she lauds the effectiveness of an all-powerful executive branch, which contains and controls the myriad regulatory agencies which currently terrorize most law-abiding citizens. She refers to &ldquoa certain kind of dynamism or energy in administration, which entails both the capacity and willingness to adopt, modify or revoke regulations, with a fair degree of expedition, to solve perceived national problems.&rdquo She lauds the President&rsquos &ldquocentral position within the regulatory state to promote a variety of technocratic values.&rdquo This talk of &ldquoenergy,&rdquo &ldquodynamism,&rdquo and &ldquotechnocratic values&rdquo in government is dialog you would hear in a Star Trek movie lauding a universal controlling federation, rather than in a constitutional republic.

Perverting Legal Education

While Elena Kagan was Dean of Harvard Law School, she wrote a brief piece in 2008 called Harvard Law School Revisited, which similarly reveals her view of the role of law in society, as it manifests in legal education. As head of the most influential law school in the world, she wants to prepare students who will then go about &ldquoestablishing regulatory approaches and governance structures to meet problems.&rdquo She wants them to be &ldquoable to operate effectively in a context where statutes and regulation (not just cases) play an increasingly important role.&rdquo

In other words, Dean Kagan does not aspire to inculcate a spirit of liberty and personal responsibility in her students, so that they may go into the world and help freedom to flourish. Her task is to teach them how to go forth and construct ever more glorious government regulatory agencies. Accordingly, her school spews out lawyers with this vision of themselves as anointed priests of the elite caste, and who increasingly occupy high positions in government, law, academia, and media.

Wrong on the Issues

Elena Kagan&rsquos positions on issues of constitutional dimension, which a Supreme Court justice would be called to rule upon, are a little harder to find, but she has expressed her positions on political issues both in word and deed over her career. From her carefully parsed written answers to the U.S. Senate in her 2009 confirmation hearings for the position of United States Solicitor General, and various other quoted statements, we can assemble a scorecard on where she stands on issues of interest to those who favor limited constitutional government.

Her tendency to believe in government has made her more likely to side with whoever is winning the fight to interpret a particular constitutional provision at the time. She swings with the political wind, and the shifting sand of judicial interpretation does not make her lose her balance. For example, she is now content to say that the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects an individual right to keep and bear arms, owing to the recent Heller decision at the U.S. Supreme Court.

In the matter of abortion, she affirms the current state of the law that allows killing of children in the womb since some judges said it was right several decades ago, and they haven&rsquot changed their minds yet. When in the Clinton White House in 1997, she supported a pragmatic compromise that would have banned a few late-term abortions. She does not oppose the death penalty because &ldquointernational law&rdquo does not prevent it, a harbinger of her universalism, rather than adherence to the U.S. Constitution.

Solicitor General Kagan argued to the Supreme Court that, where the First Amendment value of speech is &ldquoclearly outweighed&rdquo by its societal costs, the speech may be prohibited on its content. The justices rejected that brutalization of the First Amendment by an 8-1 vote, calling her opinion &ldquostartling and dangerous.&rdquo Also as Solicitor General, she argued for government secrecy in four out of five cases involving the Freedom of Information Act.

It is evident that Elena Kagan does not really believe in the Constitution, but goes along with it as a matter of expediency. To the U.S. Senate, she said, &ldquoI think a judge should try to the greatest extent possible to separate constitutional interpretation from his or her own values and beliefs.&rdquo That statement carries two disturbing implications: that the Constitution conflicts with her personal convictions, and that she is willing to compromise her convictions to keep her job.

Guilty by Association

Elena Kagan&rsquos associations reveal a great deal about her. She worked as a law clerk for the liberal Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, and was Bill Clinton&rsquos White House assistant counsel.

Some of her close connections reveal extreme socialist leanings. She has praised Israeli leftist Judge Aharon Barak as &ldquomy judicial hero.&rdquo Barak is a judicial relativist who stated, &ldquoA judge may give a statute new meaning, a dynamic meaning, that seeks to bridge the gap between the law and life&rsquos changing reality.&rdquo In his view, judges should &ldquogo beyond deciding the dispute.&rdquo This comports with Elena Kagan&rsquos own consistently expressed legal relativism. Former federal judge Robert Bork called Judge Barak &ldquothe worst judge on the planet.&rdquo

Attorney Kagan has had a long association with socialist and former Congressman and judge Abner Mikva. She clerked for U.S. Appeals Court Judge Mikva in 1986-87, and was on the faculty with him and President Barack Obama at the University of Chicago Law School from 1991 to 1995. Mikva was a law partner of Arthur Goldberg, the sponsor of a number of Communist Party fronts in Chicago, and was president of the National Lawyers Guild, a communist bulwark. He was an associate of Saul Alinsky, the leftist community organizer, and a scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies, the most left-wing think tank in Washington, D.C.

Will She Be Confirmed?

Elena Kagan has careened from one privileged post to another during her post-law school career, as law clerk, professor, law school dean, and U.S. Solicitor General. However, she has never served as a judge, even in traffic court. This lack of judicial experience has worried professionals and non-lawyers alike. However, the Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary of the American Bar Association, a powerful insider lawyer lobbying and educational group, has rated her &ldquowell qualified&rdquo by unanimous vote. No surprise there.

A July Rasmussen poll found that 42 percent of the American people oppose Kagan&rsquos nomination, while only 36 percent favor it. Senators would normally look at such numbers and vote accordingly. In an age of political arrogance, the will of the people may have no relevance, as confirmed by Rasmussen&rsquos figure of 87 percent who say that Elena Kagan will likely be confirmed as the next Supreme Court justice.

The Biggest Question About Elena Kagan

Today marks the first day on the bench for Justice Elena Kagan, the Supreme Court’s junior justice. Kagan replaces Justice John Paul Stevens, who was one of the longest-serving justices in American history, sitting on the Court since Gerald Ford appointed him in 1975. Legal experts will be watching carefully, as it’s been decades since someone has ascended to the High Court with so many questions regarding her views.

People sometimes point to Justice David Souter and a similar black box, who was appointed to the Supreme Court after being a judge on the First Circuit federal appeals court for only a few months. But that’s not accurate, as Souter had served as a justice on the New Hampshire Supreme Court for seven years prior to his federal appointment, and served as a lower-court judge before that.

You have to go back to the appointment of William Rehnquist, who was nominated for SCOTUS in 1971 (confirmed in January 1972), to find someone appointed to our highest court with no judicial experience. At age 47, Rehnquist was head of the Office of Legal Counsel, one of the two elite legal teams in the U.S. government. The head of OLC is the top legal adviser to the president and the attorney general, and Rehnquist was considered nothing short of brilliant as a legal scholar.

Rehnquist’s appointment was the foreseeable result from the outset of his extremely-promising career. He earned his undergrad from Stanford, two master’s degrees from Stanford and Harvard, and a law degree from Stanford. Rehnquist then clerked for Justice Robert Jackson on the Supreme Court.

Justice Kagan’s career parallels Rehnquist’s in many ways. She received her undergraduate degree from Princeton, then a master’s degree from Oxford, then her law degree from Harvard, where she was a law review editor. She clerked for a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit (the most prestigious federal appellate court), and then Justice Thurgood Marshall on the Supreme Court. Years later, she served as the head of the Office of the Solicitor General, which is the other elite legal team for the federal government. And Kagan was sworn in at the Supreme Court at age 50.

Although there are differences between their careers—Rehnquist had a career practicing law while Kagan worked in academia—both of these individuals had careers where a knowledgeable observer would say, “I wouldn’t be surprised if that person ends up on the Supreme Court.” Both were active in politics in a way that brought them to the attention of a president—being brilliant lawyers who were also loyal members of their respective political parties, and both would stand out as having a judicial philosophy that would move the Court in a particular direction. (President Nixon wanted a reliable conservative vote, and President Obama wants a reliable liberal vote.)

The biggest question outstanding about Justice Kagan is how far to the left she will be on the Court. She’s well-spoken and pleasant, and her carefully-chosen words made her sound like something of a moderate liberal. However, her pedigree is that of a very liberal legal thinker, possibly even to the left of Justice Stevens, whom she replaces.

It’s usually impossible to tell from the questions someone asks during oral arguments which way a justice will vote on a case. (Last year Justices Kennedy and Sotomayor both asked questions that led me at the time to think they were going to vote a particular way on a case, but ended up going the other way.) So we’re probably not going to know until early next year what kind of jurist Elena Kagan truly is.

But we’ll find out. There are cases before the Court this year involving religious liberty, immigration, free speech, and a host of other hot-button issues.

In her most recent job, many of those cases were in the office of Solicitor General Kagan before she went to the Court. Many will argue that she should recuse herself from all of these cases. But federal law only requires recusal in limited circumstances (such as if the judge has a financial stake in the case), so it will ultimately be Justice Kagan’s choice.

President Obama is taking a chance by appointing a justice who could spend much of her first year on the sidelines. It could result in a number of 4−4 ties, in which case the lower-court decisions stand. One reason Obama may be doing this is that the huge cases involving his agenda—such as those involving Obamacare and same-sex marriage—won’t get to the Court for at least another year, and Kagan will be fully in the game by that time. The other is that Obama’s looking toward the long-term, and is willing to lose a fight or two this year for the sake of willing maybe dozens of fights over the coming decades.

If she does recuse herself from these controversial cases, it might be a year before we have a clear picture of her. But if she decides to sit on those cases there’s nothing anyone can do to force her off, and we’d get our picture of her much sooner.

Either way, though, America will find out what we have in our newest justice. Elena Kagan was appointed to the Supreme Court while still young enough that she could conceivably serve for thirty or forty years. So one way or another, a new era begins today.

If Elena Kagan were a man, would we be questioning her sexuality?

It’s common knowledge that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan is Jewish, and except for some handwringing over the fact that her appointment would mean the Court would be made up entirely of Jews and Catholics, her Jewish identity is a non-issue. Unlike the debates over Justice Sotomayor’s ethnicity, no one is worried that Kagan’s status as a “wise Jewess” will color her judgment. Her sexual orientation, however, is another story.

Elena Kagan: Harriet Miers with an Ivy League Education

&ldquoTo some degree, the challenge to us is that she’s simply unknown&hellip. Other than the fact that she’s been a great loyalist of the President and she clearly is a good corporate lawyer, we really don’t know much else about her."&mdashSen. Barack Obama, October, 2005 on Harriet Miers

While I am a big fan of George W. Bush, I wasn&rsquot a fan of Harriet Miers, his failed Supreme Court nominee. However, she deserved a hearing. At least she deserved a hearing as much as the current nominee, Elena Kagan.

Kagan is Harriet Miers with an Ivy League education. President Obama could say the same thing about Elena Kagan that he said about Miers in 2005. But, it&rsquos okay because she&rsquos a liberal.

President Obama has enough votes to confirm Kagan and as Sen. Lindsey Graham (R.-S.C.) pointed out, &ldquoelections have consequences.&rdquo In 2008, there was little emphasis put on the makeup of the Supreme Court and how the next President would have a huge impact on that court&mdashand that was a big mistake we may pay for in terms of generations, not election cycles.

Manuel Miranda of The Third Branch Conference said of the Kagan nomination: &ldquoThe President must be commended for shunning left-wing activists who demanded that he select a Supreme Court nominee who could promise results for the clients that fund their advocacy. He selected a perfectly reasonable nominee for a Democratic President. Where he fell short is that, in Elena Kagan, President Obama has nominated someone who shares his personal ideology but has no judicial record to show the honed skill of judiciousness, i.e. the ability to put aside personal views to render justice.&rdquo

Now the test is before the Judiciary Committee in the Senate. &ldquoShe will sail through&rdquo is what most of the pundits are saying. The question still remains: &ldquoIs Elena Kagan is qualified for the highest court or just more richly credentialed and with a wider circle of friends than Harriet Miers?&rdquo Only time will tell. One can hope she will be the John Paul Stevens of the Obama Administration. Stevens was appointed by a Republican president and turned out to be one of the most liberal justices in recent history.

&ldquoFor Senate Republicans, talk of filibusters and obstruction is just a distraction. The real question will be how much time and effort they will invest in this confirmation debate,&rdquo Manny Miranda contends. &ldquoIn the Sotomayor debate, fewer than a dozen Senate Republicans went to the Senate floor to speak on the that nomination.&rdquo

My hope (and I love the use of hope and change in discussions of the Obama era) is to see many Republicans and Democrats rise to challenge Kagan on the floor of the Senate. This is an unqualified potential justice. She has no record except to defend the banning of books and the banning of the military on Harvard&rsquos Law School campus. As all &ldquoObamatrons,&rdquo she&rsquos the smartest person in the room, but maybe that room ought to be at an Upper West Side cocktail party and not the cloakroom of the Supreme Court.

In her limited record, Kagan has commented on what Supreme Court nominees should possess. In the Chicago Law Review in Spring of 1995, Kagan addressed the topic of judicial nominations. She wrote, &ldquoIt is an embarrassment that the President and Senate do not always insist, as a threshold requirement, that a nominee&rsquos previous accomplishments evidence an ability not merely to handle but to master the &lsquocraft&rsquo aspects of being a judge.&rdquo She goes on to point out a nominee must demonstrate he or she &ldquohas the training, skills, and aptitude to do the work of a judge at the highest level.&rdquo

The outcome will be Kagan on the bench of the Supreme Court. However, the record must be clear she is no better a nominee than Harriet Miers was. She&rsquos not a judge and she&rsquos been more of a political hack than Miers. She&rsquos an Obama loyalist. But as many have said, &ldquoElections have consequences.&rdquo President Obama will likely have another Supreme Court nominee in his first term. If he gets another term, he may be replacing a Scalia or Thomas and not just another liberal vote. We can&rsquot stop the nominations of the first term, but we can work hard to win the majority back in 2010 and then defeat President Obama so he becomes that &ldquovery good one-term&rdquo President he&rsquos talked about in interviews.

We will lose on this one. Kagan will be an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. The lesson of this is elections have consequences and the potential to appoint Supreme Court Justices should be an issue in every presidential election. The legacy of a President is as much the court he leaves behind, as the legislation he signs.


After school, Kagan landed a job clerking for Judge Abner Mikva of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. The next year, she began another clerking job, this time for Justice Thurgood Marshall of the U.S. Supreme Court. During this time, she also worked for Michael Dukakis&apos 1988 presidential campaign, but after Dukakis lost his bid, Kagan headed to the private sector to work as an associate at the Washington D.C. law firm Williams & Connolly.

After three years at Williams & Connolly, Kagan returned to academia—this time as a professor. In 1991, she began teaching at the University of Chicago Law School, and by 1995, she was a tenured professor of law. Kagan left the school that same year, however, to work as associate counsel for President Bill Clinton. During her four years at the White House, Kagan was promoted several times: first to the position of Deputy Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy, and then to the role of Deputy Director of the Domestic Policy Council.

Before Clinton left office, he nominated Kagan to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals D.C. Circuit. However, her nomination languished with the Senate Judiciary Committee and in 1999, Kagan returned to higher education. Starting as a visiting professor at Harvard Law, Kagan quickly climbed the ladder from professor in 2001 to dean in 2003. During her five years as the dean of Harvard Law, Kagan made big changes at the institution, including faculty expansion, curriculum changes and the development of new campus facilities.

Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan Receives Fordham-Stein Prize

Ten days after the end of the longest government shutdown in U.S. history, Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan urged attendees at the Fordham-Stein Prize Dinner last night to break the cycle of division and reach across the ideological aisle to learn from individuals who may not share their opinions.

“I do truly believe one thing, and that is we only make progress by listening to each other and by learning from each other and that we should do that across every apparent divide: jurisprudential, political, you name it,” said Justice Kagan.

In introducing Justice Kagan, Dean Matthew Diller spoke about how Justice Kagan herself models this respectful, reparative behavior.

“In these divisive times, it is critical that we heed the great example that Justice Kagan speaks and lives,” Dean Diller said. “The person on the other side of the political or religious or cultural divide is not our enemy. Justice Kagan believes, as we all must, in robust, thoughtful debate about the meaning of the Constitution and how to apply its principles. But at the end of the day we can sit down with a person who disagrees with us and share a laugh.”

Dean Diller went on to describe the great friendship that Justice Kagan forged with the late Justice Antonin Scalia. The two went on numerous hunting trips together and got to know each other well, before Justice Scalia’s passing in 2016.

“For Justice Kagan, the law is not a cold set of prescriptions,” said Dean Diller. “It is the ultimate conversation starter—the set of values we share that can get us to realize the profound sense of humanity in our fellow citizens.”

Prior to her appointment as the fourth woman to serve as an associate justice on the Supreme Court, Justice Kagan served as the first woman solicitor general of the United States, under President Barack Obama. She served for four years in the Clinton administration as associate counsel to the president, and as deputy assistant to the president for domestic policy. She has been a law professor at the University of Chicago and Harvard Law School and served as Harvard Law School’s first woman dean. She clerked for Judge Abner Mikva of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and Justice Thurgood Marshall of the U.S. Supreme Court. Justice Kagan earned her J.D. from Harvard Law School and A.B. from Princeton University.

In opening remarks at the dinner, Joseph M. McShane, S.J., president of Fordham University, recalled his first impressions of Justice Kagan, after meeting her when she was still dean of Harvard Law.

“I came away saying to myself and to my colleagues, ‘This is a great person. This is a wise, wise scholar of law. This is a person of great compassion who knows what is important in life,’” Father McShane said.

Justice Kagan became the ninth Supreme Court justice to be honored with the Fordham-Stein Prize. At the dinner, she expressed her admiration at the list of previous recipients, which have included two chief justices of the United States, six associate justices of the Supreme Court, four former United States attorneys general, three former secretaries of state, and many prominent leaders of the bench and bar.

“So many of those names are the crème de la crème of the legal profession in terms of their lawyerly abilities but even more in terms of how much they’ve given to the legal profession and to our country,” Justice Kagan said. “I truly am honored to be named in the same breath with them.”

Earlier in the day, Justice Kagan spoke with Fordham Law faculty at lunch, visited Professor James Brudney’s Legislation and Regulation class, and participated in a Q&A with Fordham Law students moderated by Professor Abner Greene, whose legal and teaching career has overlapped with Justice Kagan’s on multiple occasions.

Justice Elena Kagan Confirmed, Jewish Women Rock the Bench!

Elena Kagan as Dean of Harvard Law. Justice Elena Kagan is the fourth woman to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States.

Mazel tov to Elena Kagan, newest Supreme Court Justice!

Justice Elena Kagan joins Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg as the 2nd Jewish woman on the U.S. Supreme Court! She was confirmed by the U.S. Senate yesterday in a vote of 63 to 37, in which most Senators voted along party lines. After some initial brouhaha over the incident regarding military recruiters at Harvard Law and some softball-related speculation about her sexuality (sigh), Kagan's confirmation really had no major road blocks. Even the question of her Jewish identity was a non-issue. The relative ease with which Kagan was confirmed had the unfortunate consequence of undermining the true historical significance of this moment.

Justice Kagan's confirmation marks the fourth time in history that a woman has been appointed to the Supreme Court of the United States, and the first time in history that three women Justices have served at the same time! Considering the fact that women make up about 51% of the population, we are now closer than we have ever been to equal representation on the Supreme Court. To quote Joe Biden, this is a "Big F-ing Deal."

I am so excited to see another woman on the Supreme Court. And like everyone in the Jewish community, I am filled with naches to see a fellow "Jewess with attitude" making history.

To learn more about Elena Kagan, visit her This Week in History article from March 19, 2009. Her confirmation will be added to This Week in History shortly -- stay tuned!

Elena Kagan Will Legislate From the Bench

Gay Jewish President Appoints Two Gay Jewish Supreme Court Justices-- Whom Does He Represent?

by Richard Evans


The focus on Kagan's lack of qualifications distracts from the fact that she was a Goldman Sachs adviser. After her appointment as Solicitor General, Kagan took a six-figure salary cut yet her net worth somehow grew 74 percent during her year as Solicitor General. This has been explained variously as refinancing a $1.4 million home to "lucking out on the rebound of the stock market." This year, Kagan listed assets of $1,762,519 and no liabilities, with $740,000 of that figure in cash.


The crucial qualification for Supreme Court Justice is objectivity. A quick Constitutional Law refresher course is required:

The US government was founded with power split into three branches. The Legislative branch - elected representatives of the public - is given the power to make laws and amendments to the Constitution.

The Judicial branch is supposed to rule on cases based upon the existing laws. In order to do that, the ability or skill which distinguishes a judge from prosecutor or litigator is ability to rise above all personal political bias and follow the letter of the law - even if the judge doesn't like the law.

Kagan is on the record as supporting gay activism. As a Supreme Court justice, will she be unbiased when cases involving gays being 'out' in the military arise? Does she even believe that a judge should be unbiased?

Kagan's graduate thesis at Oxford made the rounds last week. Ordinarily reviewing something a Supreme Court nominee wrote in college would be absurd - but her lack of track record leaves little choice.

An article in National Review Magazine last week published key passages of Kagan's thesis pointing out that she believes the judiciary itself exists to "achieve certain social ends" and it's valid for judges to "mold and steer the law to promote certain ethical values".

She wrote: "As men and as participants in American life, judges will have opinions, prejudices, values. Perhaps most important, judges will have goals. And because this is so, judges will often try to mold and steer the law in order to promote certain ethical values and achieve certain social ends. Such activity is not necessarily wrong or invalid. The law, after all, is a human instrument--an instrument designed to meet men's needs. Concern for ethical values thus has an important role to play in the judicial process. For in the last analysis, the law is a very human enterprise with very human goals." bench-memos/55818/kagan-s- oxford-thesis/ed-whelan

(left, Tomboy)

That's crystal clear. "Judges with goals" means political agendas. That means the judge doesn't apply the laws on the books, but seeks to make the case serve to change laws of the land. That's the essence of judiciary activism.

It is interesting. The woman has no experience as a judge whatsoever, which would have been absurd once upon a time when judges were sworn to be impeccably impartial and required decades of experience.

Her Supreme Court appointment is designed to make it an unelected policy making body.

Her references to achieving "certain social ends" is code for Communist revolution. The Rothschilds, who ultimately fund Kagan (and Obama), always mask their dictatorship in sweet smelling platitudes.

Justice Antonin Scalia has frequently criticized the judicial activism trend. Issues such as abortion and legalization of euthanasia are matters for vote by state and Congressional representatives, not by judicial rulings by 'activists' judges. "What I am questioning is the propriety, indeed the sanity, of having value-laden decisions such as these made for the entire society . . . by judges" he said in 2004 (Boston Globe, Sept. 29,2004).

Elena Kagan's lack of a track record is being spun as a 'plus' by the Illuminati-controlled media. The buzz word with talking whores right now is 'outsider'.

The New Republic calls it a 'blank slate'. They're playing on public frustration with the old crowd. And the suckers always do vote out the old faces -- for the illusion there are 'real' people on the ballot, just because they haven't been in office yet.


No. The Supreme Court is hardly the place for on-the-job-training. It's a lifetime unelected position and Kagan stands to be ruling on the US laws till the 2040's. Supreme Court appointments aren't a place for 'Affirmative Action' either.

Let's be honest - everybody can tell Kagan's appointment is a done deal. Her appointment is deliberate - it lowers the bar for qualifications for the highest bench in the land. Track record and proven experience are out the window. Appointments based on gender and sexual preference are 'in'. Is Congress going to approve anybody but Jewish lesbians?

The Illuminati are doing a wonderful job of destroying America.

Sotomayor Not First Hispanic Judge- You Guessed it -the other one Was Jewish Too!

Watch the video: Τι να ΜΗΝ κάνεις όταν κάποια φοράει κοντό σορτσάκι (May 2022).