President Obama today revealed his nominee to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, Solicitor General Elena Kagan. Her nomination will be Obama's second appointment following Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
There are several parallels between Obama and Kagan, enough to raise doubts about her objectivity and her ability to impartially render decisions based on the Constitution. Some in the blogosphere, such as Ilya Somin over at the Volokh Conspiracy, consider her an adequate pick (albeit a dependably liberal one), as she has shown a willingness to entertain opposing viewpoints. Others, such as myself, look at her as a clone of Obama: steeped in academia and the theoretical applications of law, not the real-world consequences of the misapplications of law (such as the Kelo decision).
She seems to have the right qualifications: the first female Dean of the Havard School of Law, the first female Solicitor General, law clerk to Justice Thurgood Marshall and domestic policy advisor for the Clinton administration. She is decidedly liberal in her experience. However, she has no experience as a judge at any level, although she has argued cases before the Supreme Court in her current capacity.
My biggest point of contention with her nomination is the fact that she is decidedly anti-military. And when you display your animosity toward the very people who protect your rights, you are essentially saying that you're anti-American. Her opposition was based on the DADT rule. Her strident advocacy of social engineering in the military displays a startling lack of thought, both for national security and the disruptive role that homosexuality causes in troop morale.
When she decided to defy the law of the land and banish military recruiters from the Harvard campus, she demonstrated a contempt for the law. Not just any law, but one conceived and passed by a Democrat Congress and signed by her boss, President Clinton. Shouldn't we expect some respect for the law from a potential SCOTUS Justice? Her willingness to ignore the Solomon Amendment shows a disturbing propensity to defy the law to promote her own agenda. This should be enough to disqualify her as a Supreme Court Justice. If she doesn't respect the law, how can she decide the law? Ace of Spades HQ has an interesting thought experiment on her nomination.
Obama sees in her a kindred spirit. But with her thin resume and lack of experience as a judge, it appears as though Obama thinks she will grow into her position as a Justice.
How's that working out with our current President?
Poll after poll shows America to be center-right politically. Any nominee that doesn't reflect that fact is governing against the majority of Americans. And frankly, after nearly eighteen months of governing against the will of America, we've had quite enough of it. It's time for conservative Senators to send a clear and unambiguous message to this White House: move to the center of the political spectrum.