Kagan: Solicitor General Briefs
Elena Kagan has been in charge of all cases in the U.S. Supreme Court involving the federal government in her role as Solicitor General. She has, therefore, had to take positions on various issues. She has signed, and perhaps helped prepare, numerous briefs that have been filed with the Supreme Court. While these briefs state the government’s position on a particular issue, it can’t be said that they always state Kagan’s personal views. She is, after all, the government’s lawyer and is charged with advocating for her client, not herself. She nonetheless signed off on these briefs, and they perhaps provide the best window we have into her views on certain legal issues, particularly in the labor and employment arena.
During her relatively short tenure as Solicitor General, she has signed and submitted briefs in nine cases that involved in some way labor and employment issues. Only once has the position she’s taken in a brief sided with the employer. Before jumping to the conclusion that her decisions as a justice will almost always favor the employee’s legal argument, it’s in order to take a look at the nine cases in question, which will be done in subsequent posts.