Jon Kyl: No Filibuster On Kagan Nomination
One of the most conservative members of the Senate said today that a filibuster of Elena Kagan’s nomination to the Supreme Court is not going to happen:
Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan is unlikely to face a Republican filibuster, the Senate’s second-ranking Republican said Sunday.
“The filibuster should be relegated to extreme circumstances, and I don’t think Elena Kagan represents that,” Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, told CBS’s “Face the Nation.”
Kyl voted to confirm Kagan to be solicitor general, the top lawyer who argues the administration’s cases before the Supreme Court. But Kagan shouldn’t be count on his vote again, he said.
“No,” he said. “I explained at the time that my vote for the temporary position as the government’s top lawyer in the Justice Department did not suggest how I would vote were she to be nominated for a lifetime appointment to a court such as the Supreme Court.”
For one thing, it’s unlikely that the Republicans would have the 40 votes they would need to defeat a cloture motion on the nomination given the fact that two GOP Senators had already expressed support for Kagan’s nomination. For another, it’s become fairly clear in just the six days since the nomination was announced that there’s next to nothing in Kagan’s record that would come close to being sufficient grounds to deny her a vote on confirmation, a vote that she will win in the end anyway. Playing politics in this situation would likely only serve to hurt the GOP in an election year.
So, for the next month or so, we’ll go through the kabuki theater that Supreme Court nominations have become over the last 25 years. Republican Senators will ask their questions. Bloggers and pundits will pontificate. And, sometime in August, Elena Kagan will be sworn in as the 112th Justice of the Supreme Court.