Bench Memos

Rush to Kagan Hearing

Senator Leahy has set Monday, June 28 as the opening date for Elena Kagan’s confirmation hearing.  But it’s not even clear yet when Kagan’s 160,000 pages of White House records from the Clinton administration will be made available.

Leahy is clearly more interested in ramming the Kagan nomination through the committee than in ensuring a careful exploration of Kagan’s legal views.  If the White House were serious about its commitment to make Kagan’s White House records available for meaningful review, it would insist that the hearing not be scheduled until it is clear when those records will be provided.  This process threatens to be a sham.

Comparisons of time from nomination to hearing for previous nominees are simply inapt if a major part of Kagan’s record isn’t available for thorough review in advance of the hearing date.

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