Monday, May 10, 2010

Elena Kagan and superlatives

President Barack Obama has nominated former Harvard Law School dean and current solicitor general Elena Kagan to replace John Paul Stevens as an associate justice on the Supreme Court.

The Internet is spreading around superlatives and other adjectives about her. Yes, she would be the fourth woman to sit on the high court. Yes, she would bring the court to a record number of three women serving simultaneously on the court.

However, there is one description that is not quite accurate. Writers on the Internet have asserted that she would be the youngest justice. This is not true. Clarence Thomas started on the court, at the age of 42 years. This compares to Kagan, who would start on the court at the age of 50.

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