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Kagan wins Judiciary confirmation in mostly partisan vote, 13 to 6

Kagan wins Judiciary confirmation in mostly partisan vote, 13 to 6

The Senate Judiciary Committee has voted to confirm Elena Kagan’s nomination to the Supreme Court on a mainly partisan vote of 13 to 6.

All the Democrats on the committee voted in favor of Kagan, while all but one Republican, Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamDemocrats unnerved by Trump's reliance on generals Graham slams Russia Second Dem calls for probe into Russian election involvement MORE (R-S.C.), voted against her. Graham, who was one of just nine Republicans who voted in favor of Sonia Sotomayor’s confirmation last year, joined Democrats in voting in favor of Kagan.

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“No one spent more time trying to beat President Obama perhaps other than Senator McCain,” Graham said. “I understood that we lost, Sen. Obama won, and … the Constitution requires me as a senator not to replace my judgment for his … or pick a fight with Ms. Kagan.”

Graham also praised Kagan’s performance during the hearing and predicted she would serve “honorably” even though he disagrees with her “liberal” views and would not have chosen her himself.

The full Senate is expected to approve Kagan’s nomination with just a handful of centrist GOP votes, most likely later this month.

Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick LeahyPatrick LeahyThe Hill's 12:30 Report The Hill's 12:30 Report Passing US-Canada preclearance would improve security and economy MORE (D-Vt.) praised Kagan’s experience and performance during the confirmation hearings.

“She is a highly experienced person … she has been the dean of the most prestigious law school in this country and has been Solicitor General, and I note that she has the highest possible rating in the American Bar Association committee on the federal judiciary,” Leahy said.

Sen. Jeff SessionsJeff SessionsDem senator seeks more time for 'due diligence' on Sessions nomination Senate clears water bill with Flint aid, drought relief Critics of Jeff Sessions's LGBT case don't know their history (or his) MORE (R-Ala.), the ranking member of the panel, cited her lack of judicial experience and record on limiting military recruiters’ access to Harvard Law School while dean, as well as her tenure as a legal adviser at the Clinton White House.

“Her lack of robust legal experience … compared to other Supreme Court nominees who spent years trying cases, taking depositions — the kind of day-in and day-out experience that forces critical thought … Kagan does not have that kind of experience. She just does not. Most of her
experience is political experience.”

Senate Judiciary Republicans who backed Kagan for solicitor general in 2009 but voted against her on Tuesday include Sens. Tom CoburnTom CoburnWill Trump back women’s museum? Don't roll back ban on earmarks Ryan calls out GOP in anti-poverty fight MORE (Okla.), Orrin HatchOrrin HatchTax reform: Starting place for jobs, growth Overnight Finance: Senate Dems dig in as shutdown looms | Trump taps fast-food exec for Labor chief | Portland's new CEO tax Mnuchin, Price meet with GOP senators MORE (Utah) and Jon Kyl (Ariz.).