Dear Students -
On Monday, President Obama nominated Elena Kagan for the seat now held by Justice John Paul Stevens on the nation's highest court. Justice Stevens will retire this summer.
Kagan is already one of the most powerful lawyers in the U.S. government. She serves as Solicitor General, representing the government in certain cases that come before the Supreme Court. Kagan is the first woman to hold this position.
Now that Obama has selected Kagan for the Supreme Court, she must prepare for Senate confirmation hearings.
All nominees for the Supreme Court must be confirmed by the Senate. During hearings this summer, Senators will ask Kagan questions about her legal views, her career, and even her personal life.
Kagan has spent her entire career practicing or teaching law. But she has never served as a judge—a fact some Senators may use against her in the confirmation hearings.
If she is confirmed, she will be the only Justice on the current Supreme Court who has no experience deciding legal cases. This is unusual, but not unheard of. For example, Chief Justice William Rehnquist, who served from 1972 to 2005, was not a judge before he served on the high court.
Do you think Elena Kagan should be confirmed by the senate and become the next Supreme Court Justice? Why or why not. Use the information I have given you to make your decision. Remember to use complete sentences with capitals and ending marks... you are only 9 days away from being a third grader!
Love, Miss Leftin