Kagan Confirmed and Sworn-in as the 112th Supreme Court Justice

KAGAN CONFIRMED AND SWORN IN AS THE 112TH JUSTICE

By Bonnie K. Goodman

Ms. Goodman is the Editor / Features Editor at HNN. She has a Masters in Library and Information Studies from McGill University, and has done graduate work in history at Concordia University.

https://bonniekaryn.files.wordpress.com/2010/08/kaganceremony.jpg

AP Elena Kagan is sworn in Saturday as the Supreme Court’s newest member as Chief Justice John Roberts, right, administers the judicial oath. More photos

  • Kagan sworn in as fourth woman on Supreme Court: Elena Kagan was sworn in Saturday as the 112th justice and fourth woman ever to serve on the Supreme Court. Chief Justice John Roberts administered the oath to Kagan in a brief private ceremony at the court. Kagan, joined by family and friends, pledged to faithfully and impartially uphold the law. Afterward, she smiled broadly as a crowd of onlookers stood and applauded. “We look forward to serving with you,” Roberts said…. – AP, 8-7-10
  • Elena Kagan sworn in as Supreme Court justice: Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. administers the oath two days after her confirmation by the Senate. She is not expected to dramatically alter the ideological makeup of the court…. – LAT, 8-7-10
  • Brewing legal disputes could define Kagan’s early tenure: Reporting from Washington– This summer, as Elena Kagan quietly moved toward confirmation to the Supreme Court, three major legal disputes took shape that could define her early years. The justices soon will be called upon to decide whether states like Arizona can enforce immigration laws, whether same-sex couples have a right to marry and whether Americans can be required to buy health insurance. Kagan’s record strongly suggests she will vote in favor of federal regulation of immigration and health insurance and vote to oppose discrimination against gays and lesbians. What is less clear is whether she will be voting with a center-left majority that includes Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, or as liberal dissenter on a court whose five Republican appointees outvote the four Democratic appointees…. – LAT, 8-8-10
  • Kagan celebrates with Obama, to be sworn Saturday: A beaming Elena Kagan and President Barack Obama on Friday celebrated her imminent ascension to the Supreme Court with jokes and references to the irreverent sense of humor she put on display during her Senate confirmation hearing.
    An audience in the East Room of the White House, filled with Kagan’s friends and extended family, along with Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Anthony Kennedy, screamed with joy and applauded as Obama introduced “Justice Elena Kagan.” Kagan, 50, holds the title of U.S. solicitor general for one more day.
    “While she may be feeling a twinge of sadness about giving up the title of general — a cool title — I think we can agree that Justice Elena Kagan has a pretty nice ring to it,” Obama said of his second successful appointment to the court…. – AP, 8-6-10
  • Obama on Kagan: ‘This is a good day’: After receiving some so-so news on unemployment this morning, President Obama got to kick back today and celebrate the elevation of his second Supreme Court justice. “This is a good day,” Obama said in a ceremony for Elena Kagan, who on Saturday will be sworn in as the high court’s 112th justice. Noting that he appointed Kagan as U.S. solicitor general two years ago, Obama said: “While she may be feeling a twinge of sadness about giving up the title of general — a cool title — I think we can all agree that Justice Elena Kagan has a pretty nice ring to it.”… – USA Today, 8-6-10
  • Senate confirms Kagan as 112th justice: The Senate confirmed Elena Kagan Thursday as the Supreme Court’s 112th justice and the fourth woman in its history, granting a lifetime term to a lawyer and academic with a reputation for brilliance, a dry sense of humor and a liberal bent.
    The vote was 63-37 for President Barack Obama’s nominee to succeed retired Justice John Paul Stevens.
    Five Republicans joined all but one Democrat and the Senate’s two independents to support Kagan. In a rarely practiced ritual reserved for the most historic votes, senators sat at their desks and stood to cast their votes with “ayes” and “nays.”
    Kagan watched the vote with her Justice Department colleagues in the solicitor general’s conference room, the White House said. Obama, traveling in Chicago, said her confirmation was an affirmation of her character and judicial temperament, and called the addition of another woman to the court a sign of progress for the country…. – AP, 8-5-10
The President honors Elena Kagan
White House Photo, Chuck Kennedy, 8/6/10
  • Honoring Elena Kagan: Remarks by the President and Elena Kagan at Reception Honoring Her Confirmation: These folks may not agree on much, but they’ve all been impressed, as I have, by Elena’s formidable intellect and path-breaking career — as an acclaimed scholar and presidential advisor, as the first woman to serve as Dean of the Harvard Law School, and most recently as Solicitor General. They admire how, while she could easily have settled into a comfortable practice in corporate law, she chose instead to devote her life to public service. They appreciate her even-handedness and open-mindedness, and her excellent — and often irreverent — sense of humor.
    These are traits that she happens to share with the last Solicitor General who went on to become a Supreme Court Justice — one for whom Elena clerked, and whom she considers one of her heroes — Justice Thurgood Marshall. And we are very proud to have Justice Marshall’s widow here today joining us. (Applause.)
    In a tribute she wrote after Justice Marshall’s death, Elena recalled how she and her fellow clerks took turns standing guard when his casket lay in state at the Supreme Court — and how 20,000 people stood in a line that stretched around the block to pay their respects. They were people from every background and every walk of life: black, white, rich and poor, young and old. Many brought their children, hoping to impress upon them the lessons of Justice Marshall’s extraordinary life. Some left notes, some left flowers. One mourner left a worn slip opinion of Brown v. Board of Education.
    It is, to this day, a moving reminder that the work of our highest Court shapes not just the character of our democracy, but the most fundamental aspects of our daily lives — how we work, how we worship, whether we can speak freely and live fully, whether those words put to paper more than two centuries ago will truly mean something for each of us in our time. – WH, 8-6-10
  • Honoring Elena Kagan: Remarks by Elena Kagan at Reception Honoring Her Confirmation: Finally, I want to thank my family and friends. I have a lot of family here today — my brothers and sister-in- law, a nephew, a niece, aunts, uncles, cousins — and I have a great many friends here as well. You came from all over the country as soon as you heard the Senate had approved my nomination. And I’m moved and deeply grateful for your support.
    And all around me in this room, I feel the presence of my parents. I wouldn’t be standing here today if not for their love and sacrifice and devotion. And although my parents didn’t live to see this day, what I can almost hear them saying — and I think I can hear Justice Marshall saying this to me right now as well — is that this appointment is not just an honor. Much more importantly, it is an obligation — an obligation to protect and preserve the rule of law in this country; an obligation to uphold the rights and liberties afforded by our remarkable Constitution; and an obligation to provide what the inscription on the Supreme Court building promises: equal justice under law.
    Tomorrow, I will take two oaths to uphold this solemn obligation: one, to support and defend the Constitution; and the other, to administer justice without respect to persons, to the rich and poor alike.
    Today, Mr. President, I will simply say to you and to everyone here and across the nation that I will work my hardest and try my best to fulfill these commitments and to serve this country I love as well as I am able. – WH, 8-6-10
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Sonia Sotomayor Confirmed as the First Hispanic Supreme Court Justice

Sonia Sotomayor, John Roberts, Juan Luis Sotomayor, Celina Sotomayor

J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press
Sonia Sotomayor, left, takes the oath from Chief Justice John Roberts to become the Supreme Court’s first Hispanic justice and only the third woman in the court’s 220-year history. She is joined by her brother, Juan Luis Sotomayor, and her mother Celina Sotomayor.
  • Sonia Sotomayor sworn in as Supreme Court justice: Chief Justice Roberts administers the oath on a quiet morning so she can begin work ‘without delay,’ he says. Her mother and family members are there to witness her becoming the court’s first Latino…. – LAT, 8-8-09
  • Now that she’s sworn in, Sotomayor a rookie again: Sonia Sotomayor has gained admission to the Marble Palace. Now she has to figure out how the Supreme Court works…. After 17 years as a federal judge, Sotomayor knows her way around a courthouse. But her new workplace, filled with quirky customs and rituals, isn’t any old court building and new justices, like new colleagues everywhere, want to fit in…. – AP, 8-8-09
  • Sotomayor Sworn In as Supreme Court Justice: Sonia Sotomayor took the judicial oath on Saturday, becoming the first Hispanic and the third woman to serve on the Supreme Court. At just past 11 a.m., Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. administered a pair of oaths to her in two private ceremonies at the Supreme Court building, completing her ascent to a life-tenured position as the nation’s 111th justice — the first to be nominated by a Democratic president since 1994…. – NYT, 8-8-09
  • Sotomayor vote could impact Fla. Senate race: If there is one place where any bad feelings from the hearings on Sonia Sotomayor’s Supreme Court nomination could have lasting consequences, it’s Florida, the pesky swing state that the second-largest Puerto Rican community outside the island calls home. Although Sen. Mel Martinez, who announced Friday that he would leave his seat a year early, broke ranks to vote in favor of Sotomayor and urged fellow Republicans to do likewise, both major GOP candidates to replace him came out against her…. – AP, 8-7-09
  • Sotomayor’s Confirmation Isn’t a Win for the White House Sonia Sotomayor is the Supreme Court’s newest justice. And now the fallout begins: But Thursday’s vote was not a win for the White House. The latest Zogby poll showed that Americans were tied 49% to 49% on whether Sotomayor should be confirmed. That’s worse than any Supreme Court nominee in recent history except for Harriet Miers…. Fox News, 8-7-09
Robert Stolarik for The New York Times

Judge Sonia Sotomayor was greeted in her West Village neighborhood on Thursday after the Senate confirmed her nomination.

  • Sotomayor OK’d for Supreme Court in historic vote: Sonia Sotomayor won confirmation Thursday as the nation’s first Hispanic Supreme Court justice, a history-making Senate vote that capped a summer-long debate heavy with ethnic politics and hints of high court fights to come. The third woman in court history, she’ll be sworn in Saturday as the 111th justice and the first nominated by a Democrat in 15 years…. – AP, 8-6-09
  • Senate Confirms Sotomayor in Largely Partisan 68-31 Vote: The Senate confirmed Sonia Sotomayor as the first Hispanic justice on the Supreme Court by a 68-31 vote, handing President Barack Obama a victory right before lawmakers leave town for their August recess…. – WSJ, 8-7-09
  • Sotomayor Faces Heavy Workload of Complex Cases: With the Senate’s approval of Judge Sonia Sotomayor’s nomination to the Supreme Court on Thursday, the new justice will soon take on one of the most demanding jobs in the land…. – NYT, 8-7-09
  • REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT ON THE CONFIRMATION OF JUDGE SONIA SOTOMAYOR Diplomatic Reception Room: …And with this historic vote, the Senate has affirmed that Judge Sotomayor has the intellect, the temperament, the history, the integrity and the independence of mind to ably serve on our nation’s highest court….
    These core American ideals — justice, equality, and opportunity — are the very ideals that have made Judge Sotomayor’s own uniquely American journey possible. They’re ideals she’s fought for throughout her career, and the ideals the Senate has upheld today in breaking yet another barrier and moving us yet another step closer to a more perfect union.
    Like so many other aspects of this nation, I’m filled with pride in this achievement and great confidence that Judge Sotomayor will make an outstanding Supreme Court justice. This is a wonderful day for Judge Sotomayor and her family, but I also think it’s a wonderful day for America. WH, 8-6-09
  • Julian Zelizer “Senate Votes Sonia Sotomayor As First Hispanic Supreme Court Justice Obama’s Supreme Court Nominee Confirmed by Senate in 68-31 Vote”: Julian Zelizer, history professor at Princeton University, says it’s “too early to tell” what backlash Republicans will feel, suggesting that Sotomayor’s confirmation “might actually diminish some of the backlash that would have developed if Senate Republicans had been able to stifle this nomination.” Zelizer sees more disturbing implications where the nomination process is concerned. “The question is: does this harm the kind of nominees we get. Does it scare certain people out of the mix or does it cause presidents to not nominate someone who might be very good simply because they are nervous about whether they can survive the politics of this,” the professor said…. – ABC News, 8-6-09
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