The minority staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee had announced earlier Friday that retired Lt. Gen. William "Jerry" Boykin would appear before the panel next week, likely to discuss Kagan's efforts to restrict military recruiting while dean of Harvard Law School.
The announcement that Boykin would no longer testify was made after The Hill and other media outlets reported his testimony.
Boykin was reprimanded by the military in 2004 for making numerous statements casting the war on terror in religious terms when appearing before Christian groups.
Asked about Boykin's history, the minority staff announced that he would no longer testify.
"Although General Boykin’s prior comments concerning the war on terror are unrelated to his scheduled testimony on Dean Kagan’s nomination, it is clear that these comments would be used to distract from the very important issues surrounding Ms. Kagan’s actions at Harvard Law School," said Stephen Boyd, a spokesman for ranking member Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) "As a result, General Boykin will not be testifying at the hearing, however, we thank him for his offer to participate, and we look forward to hearing from the three exceptional witnesses and veterans who will discuss Ms. Kagan’s decision to strip military recruiters of their official campus access, about which many Americans are deeply concerned.”
Boykin got in trouble during the Bush administration for speeches he gave to church groups that framed the war on terrorism in religous terms.
At a speech to a Daytona, Fla., church, for example, he characterized a military search for a suspected terrorist as a religious battle:
"He [the suspected terrorist] went on CNN and he laughed at us, and he
said, 'They'll never get me because Allah will protect me. Allah will
protect me ... Well, you know what? I knew that my God was bigger than
his. I knew that my God was a real God and his was an idol."
The comments proved embarassing to the Bush administration, which at
the time was struggling to convince Muslims that the war on terrorism
was not an attack on Islam.
Boykin retired in 2007.
Kagan, while serving as dean of Harvard's law school, did not let military recruiters have access to the career services office because she believe the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy on gays serving openly in the military violated the school's anti-discrimination policies.
-- This post was updated at 8:04 p.m.
-- Elise Viebeck contributed to this post.