Idaho’s two U.S. senators will be voting against Elena Kagan’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court. Sens. Mike Crapo and Jim Risch will join most Republicans in the Senate in opposing Kagan, President Barack Obama’s pick to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. Most Democrats are expected to back Kagan, who is likely to win her appointment.
“It should come as no surprise I oppose Elena Kagan’s nomination to the Supreme Court since I opposed her nomination as Solicitor General in the Obama Administration,” Risch said in a news release. “Nothing has changed. Her actions and comments lead me to believe she will approach the position of associate justice as a political activist and decide issues based on the politics of the moment and not the Constitution.”
“Ms. Kagan has an impressive educational background, but serving as a Supreme Court Justice goes way beyond education,” Crapo said in a news release. He thinks Kagan may not follow the proper standards for serving on the country’s highest court. “The oath taken by federal judges says in part, that they promise or swear to do justice for all. As I see it, that correctly describes the fundamental and proper role for a judge. Given the review I have made of Ms. Kagan and her record, I question whether she would or could abide by that standard and must vote against her nomination to sit on the highest court in our country.”
Both Risch and Crapo are concerned with Kagan’s stance on gun rights as preserved in the 2nd Amendment. They also questioned her decision while serving as the dean of Harvard Law School to deny military recruiters access to the school’s campus.
“She has no experience as a judge that allows me to review her judicial mindset,” Risch said, “so only her political philosophy and body of work as a legal advisor and dean lead me to the conclusion I cannot support her nomination to the United States Supreme Court.”
The U.S. Senate started formally debating Kagan’s appointment on Tuesday. That debate is scheduled to span parts of three days. A final vote is expected by the end of this week.
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