Sometimes it’s just too easy. In the course of defending the record of Supreme Court Nominee Elana Kagan at a press conference today, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy broadsided Republicans, who, he said, could find a reason to oppose even the purest of nominees.
“We have some Republicans who would automatically oppose anybody who was nominated,” Leahy said. “The President could nominate Moses the Law Giver. In fact I told the President, I said you realize if you’d nominated Moses the Law Giver, somebody would raise, ‘but he doesn’t have a birth certificate! Where’s his birth certificate!’”
Leahy dismissed both conservative and liberal critiques of Kagan, trumpeting her experience outside the judiciary, and highlighting her years of scholarship. “It would be hard to find people in this country who would stand out as a greater legal scholar than she does,” Leahy insisted. “She will be confirmed.” Kagan’s critics, particularly her liberal ones, have focused on her thin publishing history as an academic, and her substantive political views remain a mystery even to long-time friends.
In fairness to Republicans, they’d also likely characterize Moses as a judicial activist who foisted Ten Commandments on the people.
Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight, and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.