Kagan Watch: Lindsey Graham acts like…Lindsey Graham; Update: Senate Judiciary Cmte votes 13-6 to send up nomination, Graham is lone GOP yes vote
He just announced this morning he’s voting with the Democrats on the Kagan nomination, and reportedly took a holier-than-thou stance by complaining about Dems who blocked Bush judicial nominations.
Spare us the bipartisan sanctimony routine.
Kagan vote count tracker here.
Via lefty blog TPM:
“What’s in Elena Kagan’s heart is that of a good person who adopts a philosophy that I disagree with,” Graham said after other Republicans criticized Kagan, the solicitor general, as lacking judicial experience. “There’s plenty of reasons for a conservative to vote no, but there are plenty of reasons for a conservative to vote yes.”
“She is a loyal American, very patriotic,” Graham said after detailing her record on military issues. He said Kagan was “smart” and “funny” and that shows “you are pretty comfortable with who you are.” He added, “she’s liberal.” Graham also said Miguel Estrada’s letter in support of Kagan hit him “hard” and factored into his decision. During her confirmation hearings, Graham and Kagan discussed Estrada’s legal career and she agreed to write a letter recommending him for the high court. Today, Graham read aloud from Kagan’s letter, which called Estrada a “towering intellect.”
He cited Barack Obama’s election in 2008, saying he’s constitutionally bound to support a qualified nominee and “honor elections” even though he would have made a different choice because he and Obama are on opposite political sides. “She’s passed all those tests,” Graham said.
The Republican also cited upcoming elections, even though he’s not up for reelection this fall. “I’m going to vote for her,” Graham said, “and that doesn’t mean I’m pro-choice. I believe the last election had consequences and this president chose someone who is qualified, who has the experience and knowledge to serve on this court, who is in the mainstream of liberal philosophy and understand the difference between being a judge and a politician.”
On a happier note: God bless Jeff Sessions.
Update 12:34pm Eastern– Senate Judiciary Committee votes 13-6 to send up Kagan nomination for full Senate vote. Graham is the lone yes vote for the GOP.
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