Elena Kagan: '10th justice' has deep legal knowledge but no bench experience





The woman President Obama has chosen to be the 112th justice of the Supreme Court has never been a judge -- not that it was of her own choosing.

Elena Kagan was 39 when President Bill Clinton nominated her for a seat on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, sometimes referred to as the second most important court in the land. The Republican-controlled Senate never brought her nomination for a vote before Clinton's presidency expired.

Kagan, now 50, went on to become the dean of Harvard Law School, and despite the lack of judicial experience, her name has appeared on every list of people a Democratic president should consider for the high court.

The expectation only grew when Obama made Kagan, a native New Yorker, the first woman to be named as solicitor general, the government's top appellate lawyer and representative at the Supreme Court....

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