NRA: Reject Kagan

Group warns senators not to approve nominee's appointment to Supreme Court.

The NRA has ended its silence regarding Elena Kagan's nomination for the U.S. Supreme Court, issuing a statement on July 1 claiming that Kagan "repeatedly demonstrated a clear hostility" to gun rights in her career in government and academia, and warning senators that it will take their votes into account when considering endorsing their re-election.

With the statement, the NRA joins the Gun Owners of America and other Second Amendment advocacy groups in opposing Kagan's nomination bid to replace retiring Justice John Paul Stevens.

The NRA issued its statement a day after the Senate Judiciary Committee wrapped up questioning Kagan. Most observers said the three days of hearings passed without any dramatic revelations -- or significant gaffes -- by Kagan.

The most revealing exchange regarding Kagan's Second Amendment was prompted byb questions from Sen Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa):

Grassley: "Federal background checks on gun purchases... was it your position that the president has authority to prevent firearms dealers from selling handguns ..."
Kagan: "Clinton committed to Brady law ... to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and insane people by background checks ... consistent with existing law, Constitution..."
Grassley: "Only Congress could do that ..."
Kagan: "Yes."
Grassley: "You still believe that the exec branch has the power to prohibit the sale of firearms without legislative authorization?"
Kagan: "As I said I never believed that the president had the ability to do that without authorization."
Grassley: "On 2nd amendment, self defense as a fundamental right... is self defense a pre-exisitng fundamental right?"
Kagan: "Self-defense is the core of the 2nd amendment."

Further on, when Grassley asked if the Second Amendment codifies "a pre-existing right from God or is it a right created by the Constitution?" the GAO says Kagan "looked like a deer caught in the headlights. After an awkward pause, she said: 'I've never considered that question.'"

The reponse, according to a GAO press release, indicates Kagan does not have the experience to be a suitable Supreme Court justice.

"The Supreme Court is no place for on-the-job training!" the GAO states.