Kagan will be a decidedly "liberal left" justice

I have several reactions to this. Previously Kagan supporters argued that her memos to Justice Marshall didn't reflect her own views, this was in a Second Amendment case involving DC. The New York Times article indicates quite clearly that she had strong personal views that she pushed while she was clerking. The memo in this case below indicates that she is not at all sympathetic to property rights and would support takings in its broadest forms.

Following a flurry of articles on this week’s opinions, Court commentators have turned their attention back to Elena Kagan’s upcoming confirmation hearings, parsing her records for clues to her judicial philosophy. At the New York Times, Charlie Savage highlights a memo Kagan wrote during her clerkship for Justice Thurgood Marshall, in which she emphatically urged the Justice to overturn a lower court ruling suggesting that a rent-control ordinance was unconstitutional. The memo, Savage writes, is one of hundreds housed at the Library of Congress that will be used in the coming weeks to illuminate her views. At CBS News, Jan Crawford reports on several additional memos from Kagan’s time as a clerk, including one on a case concerning a prisoner who wanted the state to pay for her to have an abortion, and another concerning a challenge to a school desegregation program. The documents, Crawford writes, reveal Kagan as “standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the liberal left” in the era of the relatively conservative Rehnquist Court. . . .

CBS's report to what a down the line "liberal left" justice that Kagan would make:

Kagan's abortion memo, expressing concern the conservative Court will use a prisoner's appeal to "create some very bad law on abortion."
Memo on "amazingly sensible" school desegregation program
Memo requiring states to recognize marriages from other states, saying the argument was at least "arguably correct."
Gun rights: "I'm not sympathetic."
Criminals' rights: wishes Court "would reverse" ineffective assistance of counsel ruling making it harder for criminals to challenge their convictions.



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