A prominent conservative legal scholar and former federal judge has endorsed the nomination of Elena Kagan.

Michael McConnell, who was nominated by President Bush to the 10th Circuirt Cour of Appeals, wrote in a letter to Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) that Kagan "deserves not a grudging acquiescence but an enthusiastic confirmation as an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court."

(Read the full letter here, via the Volokh Conspiracy.)

Now the chairman of the Constitutional Law Center at Stanford, McConnell writes to Leahy that he has known Kagan personally and professionally for 20 years.
Noting her opinions on freedom of speech, freedom of religion and executive power, McConnell predicts that, if confirmed, Kagan "will be more conservative than liberals hope, and less liberal than conservatives fear."

Nevertheless, McConnell does take issue with Kagan's efforts to restrict military recruiting at Harvard Law School, which he calls the "only serious blemish on her record."

"It would have been admirable for Dean Kagan to stand up to her faculty and politically actuve students on this subject, and she would have paid a price; but not have done so should not disqualify her from further office," he writes.