A short highlight reel of the GOP's shameless attack on Thurgood Marshall during today's Supreme Court confirmation hearing for Elena Kagan:
The two stand-out statements from the Republican side of the aisle had to be from Hatch and Kyl, and that's not stand-out in a good way.
Here's what Hatch said in his opening statement:
We also know that you have spoken about your judicial heroes. One hero is Justice Thurgood Marshall, for whom you served a law clerk. Thurgood Marshall, of course, was a famous lawyer for, among other cases, having won the landmark civil rights case Brown v. Board of Education. But from his self-described judicial philosophy and his performance on the bench, it is clear that Justice Marshall was a judicial activist as I have described that phrase earlier. Thurgood Marshall described his judicial philosophy as ‘do what you think is right and let the law catch up.’
A Salt Lake Tribune reporter caught him after the hearing and asked:
Would Hatch have voted for Marshall?
“Well, its hard to say,” Hatch said.
Then there's Kyl:
Ms. Kagan identified Thurgood Marshall as another one of her legal heroes. Justice Marshall is a historic figure in many respects. And it is not surprising that as one of his clerks, she held him in the highest regard. His judicial philosophy is not what I would consider to be mainstream. As he once explained, you do what you think is right and let the law catch up. He might be the epitome of a results oriented judge.
Apparently they think "results oriented" isn't as laden as "activist" these days. Thurgood Marshall was the attorney who won Brown v. Board of Education. He was the first African American to serve on the Supreme Court. His personal achievement and his voice on the court furthered the cause of civil rights immeasurably. It seems that Republicans are as anxious to piss off and alienate African Americans with this nomination as they were Latinos with Sotomayor's.