“So, what are your thoughts on Kagan?”

I don’t know enough about her (yet) to be definitive. Certainly it’s a given that she’s a liberal; Obama would never have picked her otherwise, but at least replacing a liberal with another liberal doesn’t alter the composition of the court. (Currently, conservative justices wait for a conservative President before they retire, and liberal justices wait for a liberal President before they retire. The balance of the court only changes gradually, as conservative justices “grow” into liberal justices, or liberal justices are unable to wait for the next liberal President.)

From first impressions, though, there are certainly reasons to be uncomfortable about Kagan. Some say she lacks experience (although that argument will never hold sway with supporters of the still-learning-the-ropes President Obama), some point to her anti-military behavior, or just question whether we need yet another Obama associate from Chicago on the national stage. My biggest concern, as we look forward to ObamaCare and other left wing attacks on the Constitution facing court challenges, is that Kagan appears to be “a fan of presidential power.” What we need right now from the Supreme Court, since we certainly don’t have it in the Congress, is a branch of the Federal government enforcing checks and balances against the White House – not writing the White House blank checks as it continues to consolidate power to itself.

On the other hand, as I said, it’s a given that Obama will give us a liberal. However, she’s not nearly as liberal / left-wing as I would have expected Obama to try to ram through Congress while the Democrats are still in control. Either she’s more radical than she appears (which would be easy given that she hasn’t left that much of a paper trail) or Obama has started to realize that even he has limits to what he can accomplish. (Maybe he only cares about how she’ll rule in some areas – like supporting his Presidential overreach – and doesn’t expect or require someone who’s militant in all facets of liberal dogma? In any event, he obviously knows more about her than we do.)

Her personal life is, or should be, a non-issue. Granted, the Democrats may try to use it to hammer the opposition into silence (the usual “ask her any tough questions and you’re a bigot!” strategy); but the fact is, it’s the Democrats who care more about her minority status (and the “historic first” that will entail, as well as pandering to a liberal demographic group which is currently not too happy with Obama’s unwillingness to uphold his campaign promises to them) than the Republicans do.

To sum up? She’s a liberal, we know she’s a liberal, we know that anyone Obama’s going to appoint is going to be a liberal… But is she too liberal, or is she a liberal we can live with? She should obviously face some serious questioning before she’s approved by the Senate (regardless of how much the ruling majority there will want to rubber-stamp her appointment), but I don’t see any smoking gun that would justify filibusters or other serious opposition (which, if attempted, could possibly backfire on the GOP and cost them momentum leading into November’s elections).

Addendum: Kagan: Free Speech That Promotes “Racial and Gender Inequality” Could be “Disappeared”…

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