General Kagan’s Maiden Argument

In an unusual September sitting, historic in several ways, the nation’s first woman Solicitor General made her first oral argument before the first Supreme Court to include a Latina, presumably wise.

The court seemed poised to undo, at least partially, a hundred-year-old ban on corporate campaign financing, as Solicitor General Kagan all but to acknowledged : “If you are asking me, Mr. Chief Justice, as to whether the government
has a preference as to the way in which it loses if it has to lose, the
answer is ‘yes’.”

Also in the picture are, left to right, First Amendment champion Floyd Abrams, unidentified attorney, former Bush Administration Solicitor General Ted Olsen and, on the far right, former Clinton Solicitor General Seth Waxman. (note: Justices Alito and Ginsburg are not pictured, but were seated on the far left.)

Dahlia Lithwick has written about it here.


Art Lien

Courtartist is me, Art Lien. I've been sketching the courts since 1976, and for most of that time the U.S. Supreme Court has been my regular beat. I've been working almost exclusively for NBC News since 1980. Courtroom sketching is a form of visual journalism or reportage drawing that is slowly dying out. Where once upon a time news organization each had their own artist covering a story, today a "pool" artist often sketches for all. It is a demanding and stressful discipline where the drawing is often done directly and under tight deadline.

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