As widely anticipated, the U.S. Senate confirmed Solicitor General Elena Kagan as the 112th Justice of the Supreme Court. The vote was 63 in favor, 37 opposed, reports ScotusBlog.com. Kagan’s short-term impact on criminal justice issues is difficult to gauge because she has not served in the judiciary but mainly in academia and the executive branch of government.
Five Republicans – Susan Collins (Me.), Lindsey Graham (SC), Judd Gregg (NH), Richard Lugar (In.), and Olympia Snowe (Me.) – voted for Kagan. One Democrat – Ben Nelson (Ne.)- voted no. Kagan succeeds John Paul Stevens, who retired after serving since late 1975. He was the third longest-serving justice in the court’s history.