I know very little about Elena Kagan and can’t say whether she’d move the court left or right or up or down or make it combust spontaneously. But Greenwald’s claim reminds me of what was said about Stephen Breyer when he was nominated by President Clinton–that he would nudge the court rightward on a few issues involving business and economics, that he was a better-than-expected nominee from a Democratic president who could have done much worse, etc. Maybe that’s all true. But just remember, on the 5-4 votes that really matter, Breyer is a solid member of the liberal bloc. I’d be very surprised if Kagan (or anyone nominated by Obama) was different.