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An elegant defense of Kagan from an unlikely source

Talk about a class act.

You'll recall that Miguel Estrada's nomination to a prestigious federal judgeship was blocked by Democrats and left-wing groups who grossly distorted his record and used every conceivable trick to keep the young, brilliant and, yes, conservative lawyer off the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit -- and out of contention for an eventual spot on the Supreme Court.

But now, rather than join some of his fellow conservatives in blindly lambasting Elena Kagan, Estrada has offered an elegant and earnest testimonial advocating the confirmation of President Obama's Supreme Court nominee.

From the letter he sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee this morning:

Elena possesses a formidable intellect, an exemplary temperament and a rare ability to disagree with others without being disagreeable. She is calm under fire and mature and deliberate in her judgments....

If such a person, who has demonstrated great intellect, high accomplishments and an upright life, is not easily confirmable, I fear we will have reached a point where no capable person will readily accept a nomination for judicial service.

This will not sit well with some Republican senators -- and may have the bizarre result of fueling suspicion from some on the left who worry that Kagan is a right-winger in Dem's clothing. (Estrada acknowledges this potential and notes that Kagan's views are "as firmly center-left as my own are center-right.") Whatever the political impact, the endorsement is evidence of Estrada's class and his high-mindedness. Let's hope that lawmakers from both sides of the aisle can follow his example -- even if they reach a different conclusion.

Read Estrada's full letter.

By Eva Rodriguez  | May 14, 2010; 12:55 PM ET
Categories:  Rodriguez  | Tags:  Eva Rodriguez  
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Comments

No one wants to talk about the fact that Elena Kagan was a Goldman Sach's lawyer. Yes, the Goldman Sachs that is under investigation for its role in the collapse of the Greek economy,under investigation for its role in the collapses of major american insurance company and investment banker, under investigation for its role in the mortgage crises, and it has told everyone that there will be more investigations. I have no idea of what role if any she played in any of the known or forthcoming investigations, but until we know that she is clean of everything, she should not be confirmed to the Supreme Court.
I cannot possibly know why no one wants to talk about the fact that Elena Kagan was a Goldman Sachs lawyer, but I am in a position to make some observations. One has only to look at the Obama administration to see how influential Goldman is on this nation's affairs and no one wants to rock the Goldman boat. What are the consequences of the influence of Goldman? One only has to remember that the former head of Goldman Sachs Henry Paulson made sure that Goldman did not lose any money in the collapse of AIG and the American taxpayer picked up the tab. Do we want a Goldman Sachs lawyer on the Supreme Court?

Posted by: jeffreed | May 14, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse

jeffreed writes:
"... Elena Kagan was a Goldman Sach's lawyer" "... Goldman Sachs is under investigation"
"... I have no idea of what role if any she played ..."

If that isn't the textbook definition of guilt-by-association, I don't know what is :)

Posted by: sambam | May 14, 2010 2:53 PM | Report abuse

as a corporate lawyer, she wouldn't conceivably have been involved in anything remotely having to do with substantive business decisions. she could have had any number of positions, but the range would extend to filing out disclosure forms, other corporate filings, stockholder stuff, contracts of all kinds, defending lawsuits, the usual. and like any lawyer for a corporation, it's just her job to take the situation she's dealt and do her best. she would never have been involved in an actual financial decision or strategy.

Posted by: JoeT1 | May 14, 2010 3:46 PM | Report abuse

I don't see how a GS attorney would not be involved in business decisions. In a corporation ideas are sent up to the legal department to see if they are legal before they are imiplemented. Her being sympathetic to GS could have been the edge she needed to get the nomination. Ya know, in case GS with all its legal troubles ever comes before the Supreme Court. Ms Kagan could be GS' insurance not to lose before the Court as Paulson was their insurance not to lose money in the financial crisis.

Posted by: jmzf | May 14, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

jeffreed writes:
"... Elena Kagan was a Goldman Sach's lawyer" "... Goldman Sachs is under investigation"
"... I have no idea of what role if any she played ..."

If that isn't the textbook definition of guilt-by-association, I don't know what is :)

Sorry for repeating it, but that was beautifully written.

Posted by: amaikovich | May 14, 2010 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Let's go into the wayback machine to 2001 when this memo emerged.

November 7, 2001/To: Senator Durbin

"They also identified Miguel Estrada (D.C. Circuit) as especially dangerous, because he has a minimal paper trail, he is Latino, and the White House seems to be grooming him for a Supreme Court appointment. They want to hold Estrada off as long as possible."

In fact, Estrada was filibustered, and withdrew his nomination after months of withering personal MSM attacks on Estrada and all his friends, family, associates, neighbors and pets...including the goldfish.

Now, considering both Kagan's ideology and the dem's treatment of pub nominees being groomed for the SCOTUS , on what basis would a pub justify voting for Kagan?

Posted by: hoplite2010 | May 15, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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