Tags: Supreme Court | Justice | Integrity | Project | Kagan

Justice Integrity Project: 'No' on Kagan

Monday, 19 Jul 2010 08:18 AM

The Senate should reject Democrat Elena Kagan's Supreme Court nomination based on her shabby civil rights record that's apparent from her Department of Justice work, according to a Democratic former New Jersey legislator and Jersey City mayoral candidate.

Louis M. Manzo, drawing on his experience fighting one of the nation's most explosive political prosecutions, said the Senate should reject Kagan because of "her indefensible support of restrictions on constitutional freedoms and her failures to defend due process."

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The bipartisan Justice Integrity Project (JIP) today released Manzo's statement by video to illustrate the project's objections to Kagan on similar executive power grounds. The civil rights project announced its objections on June 28, just before the Supreme Court thwarted Kagan's effort to block a hearing for former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman. Manzo's statement and similar constitutional criticisms of Kagan are available before Senate voting at JIP's unique website, which includes substantive criticism of her.

"While serving as Solicitor General arguing against certiorari in Siegelman v. United States, Kagan ignored constitutional protections provided by due process," Manzo said. "Also troubling is the manner by which Kagan feigned ignorance to what is frightfully apparent in Siegelman's case - prosecutorial misconduct. Instead of questioning the bizarre prosecution tactics employed against Siegelman, Kagan blindly supported positions taken by prosecutors with obvious personal and political agendas."

"What all cases involving wrongful prosecutions share in common," said Manzo, a target in the Bid Rig III case in New Jersey that helped propel Republican U.S. Attorney Chris Christie to New Jersey's governorship last fall, "is the necessity of a fair judicial system." In Bid Rig III, DOJ gave a felon large sums to donate to New Jersey campaigns such as Manzo's, with Democrats overwhelmingly indicted. Manzo won a major victory this spring when his trial judge dismissed the most serious charges.

Expanding on Manzo's themes, JIP Executive Director Andrew Kreig cited compelling evidence that Siegelman, 64, was framed by DOJ, which seeks to imprison him for 20 more years.

"The gist," said Kreig, "is that Kagan acted selfishly to advance her technocrat career, combining bad legal judgment with a monstrous cover-up. This opens a window to her other failings, which don't receive the attention they deserve. Senate confirmation these days is largely kabuki-style theater for the public, fostered by a bipartisan, back-scratching elite. Here, a president's loyalists seek to install one of their cronies over timid, partisan objections about a few special-interest topics. But we are skipping big issues about due process and our other basic liberties, which would inflame the public if ever fully aired."


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