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Friday, May 14, 2010

Want to Talk to Kagan’s Family? Permission Denied

White Houses traditionally put a muzzle on their Supreme Court nominees, to keep them from saying anything that might jeopardize Senate confirmation. But the Obama White House has taken it one step further. It is limiting, if not blocking, access to the nominee’s family.

The New York Times received permission on Tuesday from Hunter College High School in Manhattan, Elena Kagan’s alma mater, to observe a constitutional law class there taught by her brother Irving. We thought it would be intriguing to watch the give and take between Mr. Kagan, who is known as a passionate and interactive educator, and his students on his first day back after witnessing his sister’s nomination in Washington.

Mr. Kagan, who is also a Hunter alumnus, did not have a problem with the idea, a school spokeswoman said, but she added that all media requests now had to be given final approval by the White House. The times were tentatively set: there was either an 8:52 a.m. class or a 9:36 a.m. class on Wednesday. “I thought it would have been great,” said the spokeswoman, Meredith Halpern.

But when presented with the idea, the White House balked.

Joshua Earnest, a White House spokesman, said that the administration was “uncomfortable with the idea at this time.” The White House called Hunter, and Ms. Halpern said later Tuesday it could not permit the class observation. A formal proposal has been submitted to the White House, which the administration requested. They asked that it outline the intent and goal of the article in significant detail. (continues here at NYT)

1 comment:

commoncents said...

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Common Cents

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