- The Washington Times - Monday, July 19, 2010


It’s troubling that Sen. Lindsey Graham, South Carolina Republican, is openly considering a favorable vote on the Supreme Court nomination of U.S. Solicitor General Elena Kagan. The nominee has acted contrary to several matters particularly close to the senator’s core values.

Mr. Graham is a career judge advocate general for the Air Force Reserves. If anybody should find it disqualifying that Ms. Kagan flouted the law in order to ban military recruiters from the Harvard Law campus, it is a military JAG officer whose service needs high-caliber recruits. Nobody who breaks the nation’s laws should be the ultimate arbiter of the nation’s laws. That she did so to harm the military while the military was involved in two wars for which Mr. Graham was a particularly outspoken supporter should be the the straw bale that flattened the entire camel.

Then there is the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act, sponsored by Sen. Arlen Specter, Pennsylvania Democrat, to allow Sept. 11 victims’ families to sue Saudi Arabia (see editorial above). Mr. Graham is one of only two cosponsors for the measure. Ms. Kagan’s brief directly led to the ruling that Mr. Graham and Mr. Specter seek to overturn. The South Carolinian is the ranking Republican on the subcommittee that held its first-ever hearing on the bill on Wednesday, but he didn’t even bother to show up for the hearing on his own bill. Was this for fear of highlighting Ms. Kagan’s inconvenient role in the controversy?

Finally, Mr. Graham has spent his whole career as an eloquent pro-life advocate. Ms. Kagan not only was almost solely responsible for keeping the monstrous practice of partial-birth abortion legal for an extra decade, but she arguably violated legal ethics in doing so.

From Mr. Graham’s standpoint, Ms. Kagan’s actions for partial-birth abortion, against Sept. 11 families and against military lawyer recruitment should count as the proverbial three strikes.

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