The questions have begun for Elena Kagan, on what will be a long day of sparring with Republicans, trying to paint her as a liberal activist who lacks experience. But Democrats will be ready.
They will defend her as an intellectual heavyweight who can build consensus. And the plan to make this hearing as much about the conservative Roberts Court, led by Chief Justice John Roberts, as Elena Kagan herself.
I'll be filing regular posts the next two days on the questions--and also on the Senators themselves. With the help of my researcher, Georgetown Law grad Tim Middleton, we're going to show you what some senators have said in past nominations, and how they're taking directly opposite positions now on issues like timing, document production, filibusters, etc.
We'll call this Reality Check.
Elena Kagan called the confirmation hearings a "charade" and a "farce" back in a 1995 law review article. But are the Senators helping fuel that narrative by making these hearings overtly political?
You may have seen a little bit of that on Sunday's Face the Nation, when Bob Schieffer and I pressed Sens. Patrick Leahy, the Committee's Chairman, and Jeff Sessions, the ranking Republican, for flipping their positions on the idea of a filibuster. Remember the Democrats efforts to filibuster Justice Samuel Alito after President Bush nominated him in 2005? And the Republican outcry?… Read more