Senator Johanns of Nebraska Joins Others Opposing Pro-Abortion Elena Kagan
by Steven Ertelt
July 9, 2010
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Add pro-life Nebraska Sen. Mike Johanns to the list of lawmakers in the Senate who are officially opposed to the nomination of pro-abortion activist Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court Johanns joins several Republican colleagues who say Kagan is too much of a judicial activist to merit confirmation.
After thoroughly reviewing her record and listening to remarks at her hearing, I have come to the conclusion that I cannot support Ms. Kagans nomination," he said in a statement LifeNews.com received Thursday.
"Judges must adhere to the Constitution and must not interpret the law based on an activist, ideological agenda. The court is not a place to create laws, and I am not convinced Ms. Kagan understands this fundamental premise," the senator continued.
Johanns said, "Her long career as a political advisor and an academic insufficiently prepares her for a lifetime appointment to our nations highest court. Not only does she lack experience on the bench, but her record clearly demonstrates a proclivity towards judicial activism."
The Nebraska senator specifically cited abortion as another problem — and Kagan has been heavily criticized for a lengthy pro-abortion record and for memos she wrote attempting to change the opinion of two medical groups that said partial-birth abortions are never medically necessary for women.
Her views and actions on abortion are particularly alarming," Johanns said.
"As an advisor to the Clinton administration, Ms. Kagan led the fight to keep partial-birth abortion legal. She even went so far as to insert her own personal beliefs in the place of scienceextremely disturbing given the horrific nature of partial-birth abortion," he said.
"When the Supreme Court struck down Nebraska’s ban on partial-birth abortions in 2000, it backed up its decision with language from a purportedly non-partisan physicians’ group. Yet it has been reported that the critical part of that statement was not written by doctors, but by Elena Kagan, who at the time was a White House policy adviser to President Clinton," Johanns explained.
"This language essentially overrode scientific findings against partial-birth abortion in favor of Ms. Kagan’s view," he concluded.
Senators, during the hearings last week, asked questions about memos she wrote during the Clinton administration in which she pressured two medical groups to modify their stance saying partial-birth abortions offer no medical benefit for women.
Kagan’s story seemed to vacillate as she initially could not remember, but then admitted to writing, memos that urged the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists to change its position on partial-birth abortions.
While Kagan’s memos resulted in pressuring ACOG to back down on its assertion that the three-day-long abortion procedure is never necessary to protect the life or health of a woman, and while the Supreme Court ultimately cited ACOG’s revised stance to overturn a state ban on the abortion procedure, Kagan insisted she was merely doing the bidding of former President Bill Clinton, who vetoed a national ban.
Kagan also sought to influence the American Medical Association and get the AMA to revise its opinion that partial-birth abortions provide no medical benefit for women.
The memos are important because the Supreme Court initially relied on the opinion of the medical groups to overturn a state ban on partial-birth abortions that had no health exception.
Later, the Supreme Court reversed itself and said a national partial-birth abortion ban was constitutional and no health exception is necessary.
Pro-life groups have described Elena Kagan as the stereotypical judicial activist and abortion advocate.
She clerked for pro-abortion Justice Thurgood Marshall, whom she lauded, and her writings dating back to her college days are filled with accolades for judges who took the law into their hands and twisted it for a desired outcome rather than relying on the people through their elected officials.
Kagan helped Bill Clinton defend his veto of a partial-birth abortion ban — the gruesome abortion procedure when a baby is birthed halfway and then jabbed in the head with medical scissors, killing him or her. She helped Clinton find political cover for his decision to keep those abortions legal.
Kagan went as far as advocating that the Clinton administration not only ignore but manipulate the opinion of a national medical group that said there was never any medical justification for killing unborn children halfway out of the birth canal.
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