Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Pa.) said Wednesday he'd take a "fresh look" at Solicitor General Elena Kagan if she's nominated to the Supreme Court.

Specter, who, as a Republican, had voted against Kagan's confirmation to become solicitor general, said he would re-evaluate Kagan if President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaTop nuclear policy appointee removed from Pentagon post: report Prosecutors face legal challenges over obstruction charge in Capitol riot cases Biden makes early gains eroding Trump's environmental legacy MORE picks her to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court.

"Supreme Court nominations are a little different from solicitor general," Specter said during an appearance on MSNBC. "I have an open mind."

ADVERTISEMENT

The senior member of the Judiciary Committee has pivoted on some issues since having switched parties to pursue reelection as a Democrat, a reelection battle in which he's facing a liberal primary challenge from Rep. Joe Sestak (D-Pa.).

To that end, Specter expressed some regret for having supported and helped shepherd now-Chief Justice John Roberts through his Senate confirmation.


"I have been critical of Justice Roberts," Specter said, saying he'd felt betrayed by some of Roberts's decisions on campaign spending and the Voting Rights Act. "I think we've got to find a better way to evaluate nominees, even though it's under oath."

The Pennsylvania senator said that when it comes to Kagan, though, his opposition was based on an impression that she wasn't being entirely forthcoming in her questioning before the Senate.

"I voted against her because she wouldn't say which kind of cases she would suggest the Supreme Court to take," Specter said. "I think I was entitled to an answer on that. I'll take a fresh look on her as a Supreme Court nominee."