FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
President Obama promised us Supreme Court candidates who can relate to the "real world" and how the law affects ordinary Americans... but there are questions whether Elena Kagan fits that description.
Kagan comes from a world unknown to most Americans: from Manhattan's Upper West Side... on to Princeton University and then Harvard Law School.
Former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer jokes with Politico: "Are you suggesting that Princeton, Harvard and New York aren't the totality of real life?"
But a lot of people don't think it's funny, saying that someone who has spent so much time in elite academic settings is out-of-touch with average Americans.
So far - only one Republican has publicly said he would oppose Kagan's nomination to the high court. Oklahoma senator James Inhofe says he's concerned about Kagan's lack of judicial experience. He also points to her decision as dean of Harvard Law School to block military recruiters from the campus - in protest of the Pentagon's "Don't Ask-Don't Tell" policy. This could wind up being one of the biggest issues in her confirmation process.
Other critics also point to Kagan's lack of litigation experience and her scant writings. There's not the usual "paper trail" to vet a Supreme Court nominee here. Kagan has no judicial experience - she's never been a judge and has only written a few legal articles.
Also, some worry her lack of a public record means nobody knows what Kagan stands for but Pres. Obama. Still, others question Kagan's hiring record as dean of Harvard Law school - four out of every five hires were white men. Not exactly a poster child for diversity. Lots of questions...
Here’s my question to you: Is Elena Kagan the right choice to be the next Supreme Court justice?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Stephen in Camden, Maine writes:
Kagan appears to be highly qualified academically, as well as a sharp and likable person. In a recent article, though, someone suggested Kagan has wanted a seat on the Supreme Court since she was a youngster. It almost appears that her thin paper trail has been a life-long strategy calculated to help her clear Senate confirmation. If her convictions were mainstream, this would not be necessary.
Jack, She apparently has the ability to go toe-to-toe intellectually with Scalia. She reflects the character of the American people more than Alito or Roberts, who reflect the character of the American corporation. She will make an immeasurably better justice than Clarence Thomas, but so would my cat. As for being elitist, would you rather have Joe the Plumber?
How can you say in one breath that we don't know enough about her, and then ask in the next if she is the right choice? Let the process run its course. Those who have the responsibility to decide her qualifications will find out what they need to know.
"Comes from a world unknown to most Americans" – as did Justice Sotomayor, but apparently the South Bronx is more real than the Upper West Side? Come on, Jack, you've been living in New York long enough not to make a comment like that. Yes, she's the right choice, but only because Hillary Clinton is indispensable as Secretary of State.
Kevin in Illinois writes:
I think she is a solid choice for the Supreme Court. I believe that Barack Obama would be a great choice as well when he is out of office in 2016.
Mark in Oklahoma writes:
She is female, not a judge, dean of Harvard Law School, intelligent, probably has some common sense. What else would you want? One of the gals from "The View"?