Senate Hears Elena Kagan Still Favors International Law for Judicial Rulings

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 29, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Senate Hears Elena Kagan Still Favors International Law for Judicial Rulings

by Steven Ertelt Editor
June 29
, 2010

Washington, DC ( — Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee heard testimony from pro-abortion Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan today that she still favors the use of international law in American jurisprudence. That has concerned pro-life groups worried that it will further entrench legalized abortion.

As reported in May, Americans United for Life said it worried Kagan could use it as another basis to support legal abortions.

The use of foreign law in defending unlimited abortion "rights" as laid out in Roe v. Wade is nothing new for the pro-life movement. It came up during the confirmation hearings on pro-abortion Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who pledged not to use it.

"There are some cases in which the citation of foreign law, or international law, might be appropriate," Kagan said today in a response to a question from pro-life Sen. Chuck Grassley.

The Iowa lawmaker asked: "If cofirmed, would you rely on or cite international foreign law when you decide cases?"

She added that she is "in favor of good ideas coming from wherever you can get them" and said "there are a number of circumstances" when foreign law might be appropriate.

During her Senate confirmation hearings last year to become U.S. Solicitor General, lawmakers asked Kagan about the use of foreign law and she responded: "At least some members of the Court find foreign law relevant in at least some contexts.When this is the case, I think the Solicitor General’s office should offer reasonable foreign law arguments to attract these Justices’ support for the positions that the office is taking."

Americans United for Life took that response as Kagan’s willingness to play ball when it comes to pushing foreign legal concepts in Americans courts, saying, "Kagan’s high regard for International and Comparative law comes as no surprise."

AUL says she has pushed foreign law at the expense of American legal concepts.

"In addition to her admiration for judicial activist Judge Aharon Barak, who encourages judges to rely on Comparative law, Kagan led curriculum reforms in 2006 that changed Harvard Law School’s 100 year-old curriculum to require International and Comparative law," an AUL memo in May noted. "What course is no longer required? Constitutional law. It became a course students could elect if they so desired."

"Our entire legal system is rooted in and dependent on the U.S. Constitution. To no longer require law students preparing to be lawyers to take Constitutional law is like ceasing to require medical students to take biology or accounting students to take math," the pro-life group said.

Related web sites:
Americans United for Life –
Petition Against Kagan –
Facebook: Stop Kagan


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