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 GrahamSenate panel questions Lynch on alleged FBI interference The Hill's Whip List: Senate ObamaCare repeal bill Judiciary Committee to continue Russia probe after Mueller meeting 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 LeahyGoing national with automatic voter registration Republicans slam Trump’s new policy toward Cuba Trump draws a harder line on Cuba 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 SessionsSally Yates slams Sessions on criminal justice reform Preet Bharara emailed DOJ about phone call from Trump: report Sessions backs LGBT Pride Month event 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 Coburn'Path of least resistance' problematic for Congress Freedom Caucus saved Paul Ryan's job: GOP has promises to keep Don't be fooled: Carper and Norton don't fight for DC MORE (Okla.), Orrin HatchOrrin HatchLive coverage: Senate GOP unveils its ObamaCare repeal bill Grassley doesn't see how Judiciary 'can avoid' obstruction probe Ryan calls for tax reform to be permanent MORE (Utah) and Jon Kyl (Ariz.).