by Susan Brinkmann, OCDS
A representative of a leading pro-life legal organization testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee and told a packed assembly that not only should the Senate reject the nomination of Elena Kagan for Supreme Court Justice, but they should investigate discrepancies between her written record and the testimony she gave during last week’s hearings.
According to a press release from Americans United for Life (AUL), their president and CEO, Dr. Charmaine Yoest, testified before the Committee last Thursday and urged senators to investigate “discrepancies that have arisen this week” regarding actions Kagan took while working for President Clinton on Partial Birth Abortion (PBA) ban legislation.
Apparently, Kagan not only doctored the position statement of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) to show support for partial birth abortion, she pursued the same strategy with the American Medical Association (AMA).
“Similar to ACOG’s original position, the AMA issued a policy stating that no situations had been identified where partial-birth abortion was the only appropriate method of abortion and that ethical concerns surrounded it,” Dr. Yoest said during her testimony.
“In a White House email dated June 1, 1997, Ms. Kagan wrote that she just came from a meeting which focused on ‘whether the AMA policy can be reversed at its convention on June 23.’ Kagan then concluded: “We agreed to do a bit of thinking about whether we …could contribute to that effort.”
Dr. Yoest continued: “Elena Kagan was so opposed to the passage of a ban on partial-birth abortion that she appears to have advocated for ACOG and the AMA to suppress or modify their view. She made a deliberate decision to advocate for partial-birth abortion, even to the point of working to deceive the American public about the medical science related to the procedure.”
Senators Sessions and Hatch closely questioned Dr. Yoest about their concerns that the abortion advocate had attempted to manipulate and politicize the medical opinions issued during the partial birth abortion debate and on other issues of abortion-related law.
In conclusion, Dr. Yoest said that “a Supreme Court nominee’s judicial philosophy is as relevant to whether she is qualified to serve on the Court as her intellectual ability, education, and professional experience. And Elena Kagan’s record indicates that she will be an agenda-driven justice, deciding cases on her own political and social ideology rather than the Constitution.”
As an example, Dr. Yoest read aloud an opinion Kagan once wrote endorsing judicial activisim.
“. . . judges will often try to mold and steer the law in order to promote certain ethical values and achieve certain social ends,” Kagan wrote. “Such activity is not necessarily wrong or invalid.”
“The record of Ms. Kagan’s professional career in politics and on abortion reveal a committed pro-abortion ideologue,” Dr. Yoest told the Committee. “When combined with other statements and writings that reveal her judicial philosophy, it is clear that a Justice Kagan would use the Constitution and other sources of law to ‘mold and steer the law’ to promote her own agenda and force a right to abortion on our country broader than the one created in Roe v. Wade.”
A vote on Kagan’s nomination is expected within the next few weeks.
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