May 11th, 2010
01:05 PM ET
4 years ago

White House releases new Kagan video

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Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan appeared in a new video posted Tuesday on the White House’s website and YouTube page.
Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan appeared in a new video posted Tuesday on the White House’s website and YouTube page.

Washington (CNN) – Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan describes herself an "open minded person, a fair person" and pledges to "faithfully apply the law and do the best I can to decide it in the right way," in a new video posted Tuesday on the White House website.

The White House uses the video to offer another side about President Obama's choice to replace retiring Justice John Paul Stevens to the Court. Kagan talks about her childhood in New York, education at Harvard Law School, time as a clerk for Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, dean of Harvard Law School, and her current role as solicitor general.

The video is narrated by the 50-year-old Kagan, and features still photographs of her during various different times in her life, and video from Monday's announcement of her nomination at the White House.

The Obama administration seems to be employing a time-honored tradition in political campaigns by releasing the video which attempts to define Kagan in a positive light before her opponents can do so. She speaks directly to the camera during the video and even jokes about her role as solicitor general that "nobody knows quite what that means, some people think it's the people who put the labels on cigarette packages, but, in fact, it's not. That's the surgeon general."

Obama emphasized in a video statement released Monday that her "understanding of the law, not as an intellectual exercise or words on a page, but as it affects the lives of ordinary people, has animated every step of Elena's career and it is the hallmark of her service as solicitor general today."

In turn, conservatives have started an alternative messaging campaign that portrays Kagan, in part, as an elite, who is out of touch with the lives of normal Americans.

"There is no doubt that Ms. Kagan possesses a first-rate intellect, but she is a surprising choice from a president who has emphasized the importance of understanding 'How the world works and how ordinary people live,'" Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, said Monday in a statement released by his office. "Ms. Kagan has spent her entire professional career in Harvard Square, Hyde Park, and the DC Beltway. These are not places where one learns 'How ordinary people live.'"

soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Dave

    Wow, released a video and commercial. Is there something way wrong with this lady? looks like business as usual with this White House...media blitz when doing something the majority doesn't approve.

    May 11, 2010 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  2. Mark from Louisiana

    Why hasn't the white house released her memos and letters written by her when she was working in the White House for the Clinton administration? What are they hiding?

    May 11, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  3. Maria H-Miami

    Sorry, I don't care what this video shows.

    She has no experience as a Judge, has never been a Judge, has no experience with a Courtroom and it is not fair to us the People and to our Country to give the position of Judge to the Supreme Court to a Non-experienced person.

    She has no courtroom record, no Legal Opinions recorded, no Case Opinions recorded that anyone and all can review as did Supreme Court Judge Sotomayor have since she was already a Judge.

    She could qualify to work for and learn from Supreme Court Judge Sotomayor but that is it.

    If she so wanted to be a Judge then she should have done so in the lower courts and build her way up.

    May 11, 2010 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  4. Obama the liar

    those liberal democraps sure are good lookers.

    May 11, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  5. Blaum

    still don't approve......

    sorry.... but I'd like a judge on the Supreme Court..... to at least have the experience of BEING a judge..... have a track-record.... let people know how you make decisions.....how you came to conclusions....

    I don't care about how "book-smart" you are...... you can rattle off Harvard-this....and Harvard-that all day long and it will only prove my point again and again...... you need experience and a history of making difficult decisions.... and not the ones you read about... the ones that others have made.....

    sorry.... but it's too important of a job....

    May 11, 2010 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  6. Eric

    I'm open minded and cool with gay issues, but couldn't this guy Kagan NOT appear in drag when jockying for SCOTUS slot? OH wait... it's a woman??? Nevermind.

    May 11, 2010 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  7. stop stealing my money hussein

    Is this a saturday night skit? Who is this dude.

    May 11, 2010 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |