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May 12, 2010

Shocker of the Month: Elena Kagan, Who Once Believed Evasive Non-Responsive Answers in Confirmation Hearings Were "Vapid" and Grounds for Rejection, Is Now, Suddenly, A Big Fat Fan of Them

Well knock me over with a feather.

This one snuck up on me like a ninja assassin with the power to cloud men's minds and wrapped in a Predator-tech chameleon-field Snuggie.

I swear, by Jack Lord's Hair, I never saw this one coming.

As a Judiciary Committee staffer in 1995, Kagan wrote an article in which she panned Supreme Court confirmation hearings as "vapid" and "hollow" because nominees refuse to specify their positions on hot-button topics. Durbin said Kagan — who was visiting several senators' offices in the Senate on Wednesday — understands better now why nominees can't be more candid.

"She said, 'Well, the world looks a little different from this vantage point,' " Durbin said of Kagan's response when he raised the topic of the article. "I think she will be as open and candid as she can be. But there are limits. She acknowledged that in the article that she wrote, that you just can't expect the nominee to speak out on every issue and prejudice a case that could come before you in the future. So she has to be careful to respect that line in her respect to the judiciary."


Durbin said Kagan was simply frustrated at the time.

"She wrote that article as a staffer who sat back in the chairs, listening to the answers, hoping for more," he said. "And now she comes to this [process] understanding that there are limits... She's going to do her best to answer questions fully and completely, but there is a limit. We cannot expect her any more than any other nominee to prejudice a decision that she may face on the Court."

Bear in mind, too, that when she wrote that article, she was but a fresh-faced wet-behind-the-ears blushing ingenue, a mere thirty-five years young.

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posted by Ace at 05:05 PM

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