By Laura Litvan, Bloomberg News
June 10 (Bloomberg) — Republicans stepped up criticism of U.S. Supreme Court nomineeÂ Elena Kagan, saying memos she wrote as a law clerk for JusticeThurgood Marshall are evidence of judicial activism.
Kaganâ€™s clerkship for Marshall in 1987 and 1988 will be a focus of her confirmation hearings, said SenatorÂ Jon Kyl of Arizona. He is a member of the Judiciary Committee that will hold hearings on Kaganâ€™s nomination beginning June 28.
Her notes to Marshall on which cases the court should review â€œreveal time and time again an effort to reach a certain result in a case,â€ Kyl said. SenatorÂ Jeff Sessions, ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee, also said at a news conference with Kyl today her views were â€œresults-oriented.â€
Obama nominated Kagan, 50, to replace retiring JusticeÂ John Paul Stevens on the nine-member high court. A former dean ofÂ Harvard Law School, Kagan is now U.S. solicitor general, the Obama administrationâ€™s chief courtroom lawyer.
Democrats, who control 59 of the Senateâ€™s 100 seats, want to have Kagan confirmed well before the next Supreme Court term begins in October.
Kyl and Sessions pointed to a Kagan memo to Marshall in which she said she was â€œnot sympatheticâ€ to an individualâ€™s claim that the District of Columbiaâ€™s firearms law violated his constitutional right to keep and bear arms.
The Republicans also distributed a memo in which Kagan said she was â€œa bit shockedâ€ by a government sting operation that used the U.S. Postal Service to catch child sex predators. She said a federal appeals court may have been right to uphold the operation and the court should abstain from review. But she said Marshall should still order the government to file a legal brief in the matter.
â€œI think it indicates a developing lawyer who has a political bent to their legal work,â€ Sessions said of the memos.
At her Senate confirmation hearing to be solicitor general, Kagan said her memos were intended to reflect Marshallâ€™s views. She called herself a â€œ27-year-old pipsqueakâ€ working for a â€œ90-year-old giant in the law.â€
Marshall asked his clerks â€œto channel him and to think about what cases he would want the court to decide,â€ Kagan said then. â€œAnd in that context, I think all of us were right to say, â€˜Here are the cases which the court is likely to do good things with from your perspective, and here are the ones where theyâ€™re not.â€™â€
To read more, visit: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=a93z7MInnpuk
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