Newspaper article The Washington Times (Washington, DC)
Byline: THE WASHINGTON TIMES
The U.S. Senate is derelict in its duty if it votes to confirm Elena Kagan to the Supreme Court without further investigating her legal ethics.
Ms. Kagan, the U.S. solicitor general, was directly responsible for altering a key medical report in a way that stacked the deck in favor of keeping the barbaric practice of partial-birth abortion legal. She then gave testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee that appeared to veer from the actual record.
The ethical questions are threefold. First, was it unethical for her to alter the original medical-report language? Second, was it unethical for her to fail to inform the courts when a series of judges relied explicitly on her altered language in reaching their decisions to keep partial-birth abortion legal for an entire extra decade? Third, did her testimony under oath before the Senate Judiciary Committee veer far enough from the actual record to constitute a major ethical breach?
On the first question, the answer seems clear. Ms. Kagan changed a medical document for political reasons without running it back past the specific medical panel that drafted it. Result: Studies early last decade documented between 1,250 and 1,500 partial-birth abortions per year - and that's from just an incomplete survey of doctors.
Analysts from right, center and left have criticized her for this. Ms. Kagan's amendment .. has no basis in published medical studies or data, wrote former
Surgeon General C Everett Koop earlier this month. This is unethical, and it is disgraceful, especially for one who would be tasked with being a measured and fair-minded judge.
The ethics of failing to inform the courts is covered in Rule 3. …