WASHINGTON (AP) - Senate Republicans and Solicitor General Elena
Kagan are facing off over whether her objection to the military's
ban on openly gay soldiers and her decision to restrict recruiters
at Harvard Law School disqualify her from serving on the Supreme
Just minutes into Kagan's confirmation hearing Monday, Alabama
Sen. Jeff Sessions charged she had "kicked the military out of the
recruiting office" at Harvard, "in violation of federal law."
"Her actions punished the military and demeaned our soldiers as
they were courageously fighting two wars overseas," Sessions said.
"I can't take this issue lightly."
The recruitment matter is one of the few points on her resume
that Republicans have been able to use against her. Her policies
and writings on the issue call up broader themes of patriotism and
equal rights, both emotional topics at a time when the nation is at
war and both parties are gearing up for the midterm elections. In
some measure, the November balloting will be a referendum on her
patron, President Barack Obama.
At the very heart of Kagan's decision at Harvard is an even more
sensitive topic - her opposition to the military's "don't ask,
don't tell" policy on openly gay soldiers.