August 5th, 2010
01:42 PM ET
4 years ago

Brown to oppose Kagan for high court

Sen. Scott Brown will not vote in favor of confirmation for Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court.
Sen. Scott Brown will not vote in favor of confirmation for Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court.

Washington (CNN) - Republican Scott Brown will not vote for Elena Kagan, the Massachusetts senator announced Thursday, saying she lacks both the judicial and courtroom experience required of a Supreme Court justice.

"I cannot vote to confirm Elena Kagan. The reason is simple. I believe nominees to the Supreme Court should have previously served on the bench," Brown said in a statement. "Lacking that, I look for many years of practical courtroom experience to compensate for the absence of prior judicial experience. In Elena Kagan's case, she is missing both."

Kagan is expected to be confirmed Thursday as the 112th justice to the Supreme Court and could be sworn in to her judicial post by week's end.

Kagan has spent a substantial portion of her career in academia, a place that Brown views as lacking the real world gravitas of the nation's courtrooms.

"No classroom can substitute for the courtroom itself, where decisions are made that affect the day-to-day lives of American citizens, and where one's judicial character and temperament is shaped in favor of the fair and just application of the law," Brown said.

Five Republicans have so far signaled their intention to vote for Kagan, meaning the GOP doesn't have the strength in numbers in order to filibuster her nomination.

Only one Democrat, Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska, has announced his opposition.

A majority of Americans want the Senate to confirm Kagan to the Supreme Court, according to a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll released Tuesday. Fifty-four percent of people questioned say they would like to see senators vote in favor of Kagan's nomination, with 34 percent opposed.


Filed under: Elena Kagan • Popular Posts • Scott Brown • Supreme Court
soundoff (88 Responses)
  1. michael

    Not a surprise this guy does not know that over 50% of the past justices also did not have courtroom experience. As an attorney I can tell you knowledge of the law is what is important, the logistics of a courtroom are no more important that the layout of your office wherever you work.

    This guy has yet to do anything! why does he have a following, oh yea because hes good looking. my bad :-)

    August 5, 2010 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  2. Jilli

    Brown strikes me as a real doofus – very shallow thinker. Just think of some of the great judges he would have passed on because they haven't served previously.

    I think he's better suited for the pink leather shorts and centerfold shots.

    August 5, 2010 03:27 pm at 3:27 pm |
  3. Doris

    Palin is poison – she is being given to much credit and getting too much exposure and trying to RUIN the country WITH HER VISCIOUS TONGUE. Please go back to fishing in Alaska, you have now made enough money so go look after your children and be a good mother and wife.

    August 5, 2010 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  4. Allen, Texas

    Brown is voting NO! for Elena Kagan's nomination, a nominee he walked into to the Senate Chamber and introduced to the Senate Judicial Committee. What a hypocrite! When he knew he was going to tote the party line and not vote for her, why did he introduce her effusively to the committee as qualified and a good citizen of Massachussets. He is just a caretaker Senator anyway. Democrats just didn't have a good candidate for that seat when the Great Senior Senator from Massachussets, Ted Kennedy passed away. That seat will go back to a real Democrat when the seat is up for reelection in two years.

    August 5, 2010 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  5. Ralph

    MA has to get rid of this clown.

    August 5, 2010 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  6. vegage

    I hope the Massachusetts people take not of this and vote him out. He does not represent the very proud liberal state of Massachusetts.

    August 5, 2010 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  7. Allen, Texas

    Scott Brown says he will not be voting for Elena Kagan because she lacks both the judicial experience and coutroom experience. The Constitution say nothing about judicial experience or courtroom experience as qualification for the nomination as SCJ. Republicans are a bunch of hypocrites. When George Bush attempted to nominate her Legal Counsel, Harriett Myers to the Supreme Court, all you hear from Republicans is that you do not need judicial experience as a SCJ, now that the table has turned, they speak with forked tongue.

    August 5, 2010 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  8. Progressive from Georgia

    Scott Brown's comment that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagen lacks judicial experience stands in stark contrast to Associate Justice Antonio Scalia's remark that he would welcome a new justice to the Supreme Court that lacks such experience. He thinks the Court should be more diversified with lawyers experienced in other areas beside the bench.

    August 5, 2010 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  9. one voice

    And your experience to become Senator is an underware layout?

    August 5, 2010 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  10. david

    Just another example of how the GOP rolls and Brown is no different, nor is he filled with fresh new ideas. I hope he enjoys the fluke win, because he will not be re-elected.

    August 5, 2010 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  11. jeff in indy

    to be expected. he's been under fire lately for being too "bostonian" and needs to keep his somewhat RINO cred. he knows she's already got the votes so it's an easy NO vote for him...

    August 5, 2010 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  12. Brian

    The Supreme Court exists to address issues that lower courts have not effectively addressed. So what does a boatload of experience in lower courts provide to a candidate for SCOTUS? Supreme Court justices are SUPPOSED to be thoughtful and academic. They are SUPPOSED to transcend the thought process of lower courts.

    This is just another instance of the Party of NO being obstructionist.

    August 5, 2010 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  13. MiSalesGal

    Good job, Senator Brown! Looks like it's time for me to make another donation to your campaign fund!

    August 5, 2010 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
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