Monday, June 7, 2010

Supreme Court Nominee On Assisted Suicide

Friday’s document dump of US Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan’s missives during the Clinton administration provide at least some info on what she thinks of the feds stepping in to ban assisted suicide. She thinks that it’s not a good idea.
New Docs: Kagan on Assisted Suicide Law
As a mid-level White House staffer, Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan argued it was a "terrible idea" to pursue federal legislation in response to a state assisted suicide law, in a hand-written aside on a memo buried in more than 40,000 documents [1] released Friday from the Bill Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock.
The 1998 document [page 30] [2] reveals Kagan's previously unknown view on how she believed the federal government should respond to an Oregon law allowing assisted suicides. Kagan writes in her own hand the following:
Karen Popp called this week to say that DOJ is ready to opine that Oregon doctors who assist suicides are not violating the Controlled Substances Act. (This is contrary to an initial DEA ruling.) We need to decide whether to accompany this ruling with a request for new legislation making assisted suicide a federal crime. I think this is a fairly terrible idea, but I know Begala likes it. Do we need to run some kind of policy process? Elena. more

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