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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate Judiciary Committee postponed scheduled action Tuesday to send Elena Kagan's Supreme Court nomination to the full Senate for confirmation, setting a panel vote for next week.
Republicans insisted on the delay, saying they needed more time to review Kagan's written answers to questions they posed to her after her confirmation hearings, and to inquire still further into how she would behave as a justice.
There's little doubt that the Judiciary panel, where Democrats have a lopsided majority, will approve President Barack Obama's nominee to succeed retiring Justice John Paul Stevens, and that she'll win Senate confirmation within weeks. Democrats have more than enough votes to elevate her, and a handful of Republicans is likely to join them.
But most GOP senators are expected to vote "no," and Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, the top Republican on the Judiciary Committee, strongly suggested he'll be one of them.
"Fundamentally, the nominee lacks the experience and intellectual rigor that you develop in the full-time practice of law or from serving as a judge," Sessions said of Kagan, who served as solicitor general but has never been a judge or spent substantial time practicing law.
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