Conservative Praise for Elena Kagan


Writing at The New Republic, former Reagan administration solicitor general and longtime Harvard law professor Charles Fried sings the praises of Solicitor General Elena Kagan, the former Harvard law dean and presumptive front-runner to replace Justice John Paul Stevens on the Supreme Court:

I do not doubt that her heart beats on the left. After all, she clerked for Abner Mikva and Thurgood Marshall, two of the most liberal judges to sit on their respective courts, and she calls Marshall her legal hero. No, what it all tells us is that she came to Harvard Law School at a critical time in its history and determined that it was her job to make the biggest, richest, and most famous law school in the world also the best. And that she would do it by recruiting excellent teachers from across the ideological spectrum. That she would make students with every point of view feel as if they were part of an intellectual and professional enterprise. That the students and faculty should feel this was not just a place to come to work and an experience to be endured, but an enjoyable and satisfying part of a life that should be satisfying and enjoyable in its entirety. She saw that was her job; that was her role. She threw herself into it wholeheartedly. And she succeeded.


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  1. The days of unamimous or near unamimous SCOTUS votes are over. The Democrat behavior during the Bush years saw to that. But at least they won’t filibuster.

  2. HLS is overrun by liberals.

  3. The whole idea of law school is perfect for politically ambitious liberals. You’re free to major in something stupid like sociology, women’s studies or african studies as an undergrad and then turn it all around in the eyes of impatient and/or skeptical friends and relatives by tatking a few months to study for the LSAT after you get done with the peace corps or whatever.

  4. In fact, this is one of the ways one comes to share political views with The Economist. These starry-eyed left wingers learn pretty quickly about financial incentives and markets when they find themselves working 100 work weeks and memorizing tax code since their starting salaries are $250k/year.

    1. *100-hour work weeks

  5. That article probably just sunk any chance she had.

  6. it was her job to make the biggest, richest, and most famous law school in the world also the best.

    They turn out some damn fine Constitutional Law scholars.

  7. That she would make students with every point of view feel as if they were part of an intellectual and professional enterprise.

    If she actually did that (and I have no opinion in one direction or another that she truly did), then she was presumably subjected to inquiry of some sort by the other deans at Harvard.

  8. her job to make the biggest, richest, and most famous law school in the world also the best.

    Yale is still regarded as the top law school, so you’re doing a heck of a job, Elena.

    1. There was a time when I’d argue that, but now . . . .

  9. Kagan’s controversial only because everyone knows she’s teh sekret lezbian.

    The funny thing about our particular moment in history is that no one on the right or left is sure of whether that’s a positive or a negative anymore.

  10. Meh. This read to me like something any member of the club would bang out for any other member of the club.

    1. Pretty much. She is nice. She has the right friends. She went to the right school. So she has to be good right? It reads like Chris Buckley’s endorsement of Obama. He is erudite. He went to Harvard. He has written books. Of course he will be a good President.

    2. I hope that one of these days Americans will speak up and start to ask themselves what allowing Harvard and Yale to run the entire country has gotten us.

  11. The hail fellow well met crap that Fried dishes out in this article makes me ten times more suspicious of Elena than I was before.

  12. They turn out some damn fine Constitutional Law scholars.

    I see what you did there.

  13. recruiting excellent teachers from across the ideological spectrum

    In what universe did this happen? It’s not believable that a hardcore leftist like Kagan would do such a thing, and we would have seen her excoriated in the press if she had.

  14. Well, it should at least make for an entertaining confirmation hearing, when the Republicans ask her to explain her decision to ban military recruiters from Harvard Law School.

    While continuing to accept federal funds in violation of the law.

  15. “it was her job to make the biggest, richest, and most famous law school in the world also the best.”

    Wow, that sounds HARD.

  16. In the news Elena Kagan stated about the rights to bear arms–that she was not sympathetic. She said at the hearing, there is no question the second amendment guarantees the right to bear arms (but)not unlimited rights against government regulations. This is a reality we’re dealing with. This is a new view of the constitution she deals with. She wants power and control by the government, especially Obama’s government.

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