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Release the Kagan

The Senate confirmation hearings expose Elena Kagan's Upper West Side background and association with activist judges. (07:00)

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Release the Kagan
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I know that I will be accused of racism, but if Kagan is confirmed, the Supreme Court will have six Catholics and three Jews.

Catholics are about 25% of the population and Jews are less than two percent. So whatever their political persuasion, they hardly represent the vast majority of Americans.

Well, that's true of Congress too. We're unlikely to get demographic similarity in politics. I'm not sure it should be a priority issue either.

Congress Demographics

Wikipedia's Supreme Court Demographics

Wikipedia's American Demographics

Women are 17% of Congress, obviously less than the ~50% in the US. The Supreme Court is now going to be 3/9ths women, or 33%, roughly twice the percentage of Congress.

Obviously secular people are underrepresented in all parts of our government too.

Not much you can do about that. I wouldn't oppose the nomination of a Justice on the basis of religion, gender, or race. Certainly not if I was a politician: it sounds like political suicide. Well, maybe not all religions, but certainly Judaism.

Should the president aim as his first criteria for a justice to level the demographics? I dunno. I'd say it's a secondary or tertiary consideration.

And at least we don't have evangelical Christians on the Supreme Court, despite their prevalence in America. Maybe we should be thankful for that.

This seems right--demographic correlation is only, at best, symbolic, and there's only so much diversity you can add to a pool of nine. Even if they're Catholic, Scalia and Thomas probably seem good enough to the evangelical right. After all, Thomas supports incorporation of the Second Amendment but not of the Establishment Clause.


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