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-- no idea whether Elena Kagan is the absolute front runner but I think any of the four.
Have to stellar academic professional qualifications for the court.
President Obama talked about.
-- talked often really about how judges should be guided.
By their empathy.
This year the buzz phrase seems to be core constitutional values.
This question of what the constitution is that how much power judges should have.
As powers should be at the heart of the debate over the next Supreme Court nominee.
-- senior administration officials insist President Obama has not yet made up his mind but all indications are it could be soon.
Possibly as soon as this weekend with an official announcement on Monday it's a possibility here the four.
Front runners were told.
Solicitor general Elena Kagan seven circuit appeals -- judge Diane Wood DC Circuit Court of Appeals judge Merrick Garland -- ninth circuit.
Appeals judge Sidney Thomas but all of those solicitor general -- Kagan is said to be in the front runner seats.
Easily confirmable many say because of -- 6131.
Senate confirmation as solicitor general.
And also attractive her lack of extensive legal paper trail.
Let's bring in our panel Steve Hayes senior writer for the weekly standard Juan Williams news analyst for national public radio and syndicated columnist Charles -- Charles any thoughts.
Well I think the president has a political choice ahead of him among these choices if you -- to go long or ideologically he chooses would.
If you want to do is safe from field goal he goes with that Kagan.
What is really -- there's a lefty -- her most notorious in case -- one in which she wrote the opinion for the second at for the seventh circuit.
-- finding against anti abortion demonstrators.
Who are convicted under the Rico statue which is extortion and racketeering intended death.
For the mafia.
Well she wasn't -- you just overturn day to launch she did it again and they overturned -- the second time.
-- nothing that's a pretty big slap down.
So if he wants to make his mark ideologically and this is a president who doesn't mean he went along on stimulus he went -- on health care.
He'll be remembered for a lot of these really historic.
From the left achievements.
-- go with her -- -- is the safer choice she has sort of friends on the right.
As a result of our -- conduct yourself as -- -- you know Harvard Law School where she was open to ideological.
Diversity on the faculty which is.
Rather shocking and an Ivy League campus which is open to ideological.
Diversity -- supreme Soviet was in the old days.
But there's one thing that puzzles me why in the mix -- we not hear about an African America.
He wants to leave -- -- -- in the eyes of a lot of liberals Clarence Thomas is not the man who ought to be.
Have that seat as the -- of Thurgood Marshall because he's a conservative.
If there's going to be a long shot here and all of these names that we're hearing about a smoke screens.
My completely speculative to guess is that he'd pull out an African American that we haven't heard about or talked about perhaps.
Eric Holder in the past would have been the candidate but he's around sixteen months.
One what about that.
Well there's you know among the top ten I think -- is there's only one African American and really -- not.
High on the list so.
What we're looking at I think is the transformational court you're looking at diversity -- Charles in terms of women I think that's this is the moment for women and I think it's an advantage.
For both -- and would to be women and what is they momma working mom com and that would of course I think signaled a lot to the women.
That are so central to Barack Obama's political base swing voters that Democrats need not only this November we're going forward.
The other thing I think to be said here is that unlike -- I think would it is a spectacular candidate I think she.
That has demonstrated the intellectual might going up against strong conservatives.
Prolonged period of time and she is truly be standard beer in terms of people who believe in having -- somehow.
Create a counterweight to what Justice Roberts has started with the court Justice Roberts Scalia and Thomas and that is I think that we have been hearing.
-- lot from democratic lawmakers that the president the administration was really looking at someone who could steer votes who could try to.
In almost a political way Steve.
The -- of the Chief Justice -- -- somebody who somebody who could do what Justice Stevens did somebody is which was purring along the court moderates.
Deep into embrace.
Positions that he held -- left.
I think if that's the criteria that's what you want finally Elena Kagan is the person you want to do that she is by all accounts from people who dealt with -- and personally and intellectually.
Someone who can make convincing and compelling arguments and -- her arguments in a way that is persuasive to people who might out of always wise be -- -- To agree with -- and I think you're seeing that to a certain extent.
In these -- half embrace that she's getting from some conservatives particularly conservative academics.
You know it goes beyond just the fact that she hired three conservatives at Harvard and certainly that is to -- credit.
But I think it's also the fact that she treats conservative arguments with respect that she seems to genuinely -- interest in and understanding.
-- conservative that I jurists are coming from so as Charles puts it this -- -- layup with its eleven Kagan in the confirmation.
I -- I think it's pretty easy.
But but there's you know there are also -- fascinating politics about this broadly Arlen Specter when he was a Republican.
Voted against -- Kagan before her nomination S solicitor general maladies that a Democrat with a primary in in two weeks.
If he's gonna have to vote for because he's got to do with the White House is doing but he's -- heated primary that's close in the past couple weeks which.
Makes this not only the issue that will be talking about.
Here for the next several weeks but I think it becomes potentially a pretty big campaign issue in Pennsylvania she was.
Firm distant for the record she was confirmed easily and would have Republican supporters who want to -- and when she was nominated be solicitor general in the -- -- something.
Steve was saying there's really only one person that President Obama is focused on in the internal negotiations going on with the White House counsel by our.
And that is.
Justice -- everybody wants justice getting -- -- vote if you do get Kennedy away from Justice Roberts and Scalia then you've got -- -- The bad company he came back.
So the one advantage Kagan has his her youth she's fifty she could be on for three decades.
Long after America goes bankrupt them shall still be on the court.
I had some huge advance I think she's got seven years on.
I think they'll -- 57.
Perhaps humbled by -- two I mean Clarence Thomas -- -- bench he was indeed the on this occasion would be the armies to Mexico legacy.
And quickly want is there any disappointment in the African American community if he does not.
Nominate an African I haven't heard of people in fact I'm thinking you know Charles this very sensitive now I realize -- musicians because I had heard from anybody else always have been.
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