Washington Democratic and Republicans senators alike lamented the increasingly sharp partisan divide over the Constitution and the courts Tuesday, and then divided mostly along party lines to approve Elena Kagan, President Barack Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court.
The lone maverick was Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., who voted to confirm Kagan because, he said, she is smart, well-qualified and of good character.
“But yes, she’s liberal,” he said and paused. “Sort of expected that actually.”
Kagan won a 13-6 vote from the Senate Judiciary Committee, the next to last stop on her way to a lifetime seat on the Supreme Court. The Senate is expected to give her final approval in early August.
If confirmed, the nine-member Supreme Court will have four Democratic appointees for the first time since 1971. And for the first time ever, three of the justices will be women, and none will be a Protestant.