WASHINGTON (JTA) -- For the first time in history, a U.S. Supreme Court convened this week with three Jewish justices.
And Jewish defense organizations had their eyes on … Arizona.
Two of the three cases on the docket this session attracting special attention from Jewish groups come from the Grand Canyon State. One addresses tax credits for religious schools; another looks at whether state immigration laws outweigh the U.S. government. The third case, out of Maryland, deals with free speech protections.
(JTA) -- Elana Kagan became the third Jewish justice on the current U.S. Supreme Court with her confirmation by the U.S. Senate.
The Senate approved the nomination of Kagan, the U.S. solicitor general, in a 63-37 vote Thursday.
Kagan, 50, joins Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer as Jewish justices on the high court. She becomes the court's 112th justice and the fourth woman to serve, including Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor on the current panel.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee approved Elena Kagan for the U.S. Supreme Court in a vote mostly on party lines.
Kagan, who would be the third Jewish justice on the current court, received 13 votes; six committee members voted against her nomination.
Democrats favored and Republicans voted against, with the exception of Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who cautioned his colleagues to base their votes on character and qualifications, and not on ideology.
Her background surfaces even as Jewish groups mostly silent on wider nomination battle.
James D. Besser
A Jewish community divided over key constitutional questions is watching closely but mostly silently as a hyper-partisan Senate debates President Barack Obama’s nomination of Elena Kagan to succeed the retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens — and as hints that the nominee’s Jewishness is being used against her surface.