Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.) today applauded the confirmation of Solicitor General and former Harvard Law School Dean Elena Kagan as the next Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. Kerry, Massachusetts' senior senator who worked closely with Kagan on tobacco legislation during her service in the Clinton White House, introduced Kagan at her confirmation hearing, stating that "Massachusetts is proud of Elena Kagan's accomplishments, and we believe that through these hearings as you get to know her as we do, she will earn broad bi-partisan support just as she did when she was nominated as Solicitor General." Her nomination to the Supreme Court was approved by a vote of 63 to 37, with Republican Senators Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) voting in favor of her nomination.
"Massachusetts is proud to send yet another outstanding public servant and great mind to serve on the Supreme Court, and as father to two daughters, I'm especially proud that in an America where women comprise more than half the population, Elena Kagan now joins Justices Ginsberg and Sotomayor in making history as the first women to comprise a full third of the highest court in our country," said Sen. Kerry.
"I am especially encouraged that, just as when she was confirmed as Solicitor General, Elena Kagan has received broad, bi-partisan backing, including the support of Republicans from states as conservative as South Carolina and Indiana. That support is a real measure of her ability to build consensus across ideological lines and her real-world understanding of how the law and public policy impact Americans in their daily lives. Justice Kagan will serve our country and the law well for years to come."
Elena Kagan was previously nominated for the U.S. Court of Appeals of the District of Columbia in 1999 but was never given a hearing and her nomination expired. She has served as a White House advisor during the Clinton Administration, a lawyer, professor, as Dean of Harvard Law School and as Solicitor General of the United States.