At a forum in Washington D.C. convened to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the nomination of retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, Justice Elena Kagan remarked that her job has not changed much between her post as solicitor general for President Obama and that of her current lifetime position as Supreme Court Justice of the United States.
On a panel that included retired Justice O’Connor and current Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor, Justice Kagan was asked by the forum moderator if serving as solicitor general had been helpful and useful to her in her new position.
“Yeah, hugely helpful,” said Justice Kagan. “You know, because you’re just kind of looking at the court from somewhat different vantage point, but really spending all your time thinking about those 9 people and what they are doing. So, sometimes I think that the job doesn’t really change at all, that as solicitor general my life was spent trying to persuade 9 people and now it’s just trying to persuade 8 people.” Justice Kagan’s role as solicitor general was to advocate for the Obama administration’s cases before the Supreme Court.
A video of the panel discussion can be seen here.
A truly interesting comment from Justice Kagan, whom many believed should have recused herself from hearing the case against ObamaCare since she served as solicitor general when the president’s health care legislation was debated in Congress and challenged in federal court.