MALDEF Neutral on Elena Kagan

Confirmation Process Ignores Critical Shifts in U.S. Demographics

August 5, 2010

LOS ANGELES, CA – Today, the Huffington Post published an article by Thomas A. Saenz, MALDEF President and General Counsel, in which he explains that MALDEF has reluctantly decided not to take a position on Elena Kagan's Supreme Court nomination, largely because the federal government's judicial selection process does not adequately account for the legal concerns of an increasingly Latino United States. This rare decision comes because Kagan's record as an attorney is too ambiguous for MALDEF to make an informed determination about her current knowledge and potential understanding of Latino legal concerns, such as immigration and "the use of race-linked proxies for discrimination." An excerpt from the Huffington Post article is below:

“Kagan’s confirmation as Supreme Court Justice will come without the endorsement of MALDEF, the nation’s leading Latino civil rights law firm. Given its mission to promote the civil rights of Latinos in the United States through the legal system, MALDEF has generally taken a public position in support of or in opposition to Supreme Court nominees. The decision to take a neutral position on the confirmation was not easy, and several prominent members of MALDEF’s board strongly advised support for Kagan’s confirmation. The outcome arises largely from the way the Supreme Court confirmation process has developed over the last quarter century. Simply put, that process no longer elicits much in the way of useful additional information about a nominee; instead it has devolved into a predictable battle of partisan sound-bites, many of them resting on half-truth and unsupported assumption.”

To read the full article, click here:

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Copyright 2009 MALDEF — Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund