President Obama's nomination for the Supreme Court has left law professors and political advocacy groups a thin record to mull over, especially on religious liberty and abortion cases.
When she served in President Bill Clinton's administration, Kagan urged Clinton to support a ban on late-term abortions, according to a memo obtained by the Associated Press. She also recommended that Clinton support legislation banning human cloning. Clinton supported both proposals, which failed to pass in Congress.
"It's political pragmatism," said David Smolin, a law professor at Samford University's Cumberland School of Law. "To me it says more about her as somebody who prudentially tries to get what's possible rather than holding out for the ideal position. If asked, she would probably say it was arguably compatible with Roe v. Wade and does not indicate one way or another her own view of Roe v. Wade."
Pro-life organizations have expressed concern about Kagan's nomination while pro-choice groups have lauded the decision.
The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) acknowledged there is little on public record about Kagan's specific views on the Supreme Court's past abortion-related rulings. However, the NRLC focused on an essay Kagan wrote lamenting the Republican wins in 1980, in which she references the "Moral Majority," an organization founded by the late megachurch pastor Jerry Falwell that has since dissolved.
"Even after the returns came in, I found it hard to conceive of the victories of these anonymous but Moral Majority-backed opponents of Senators Church, McGovern, Bayh and Culver, these avengers of 'innocent life' and the B-1 Bomber, these beneficiaries of a general turn to the right and a profound disorganization on the left," ...