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Robert Bork's Comments about Former Israeli Chief Justice are Appalling


Rabbi Saperstein: "We are deeply appalled by Robert Bork's declaration yesterday that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan's admiration of former Israeli Chief Justice Aharon Barak makes unfit to serve as a Supreme Court Justice."

Contact: Sean Thibault or Jessica Weiser
202.387.2800 | news@rac.org

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 24th, 2010 - In response to former Solicitor General and Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork's statement that Elena Kagan should be "disqualified" from serving on the United States Supreme Court because of her admiration of former Israeli Chief Supreme Court Justice Aharon Barak, Rabbi David Saperstein, Director and Counsel of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, issued the following statement:

“We are deeply appalled by Robert Bork's declaration yesterday that Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan's admiration of former Israeli Chief Justice Aharon Barak makes her unfit to serve as a United States Supreme Court Justice. Chief Justice Barak's legacy of affirmation of fundamental rights and the rule of law and his profound and enduring impact on the Israeli judicial system, should be celebrated and admired, not used as a political tool to derail the confirmation of a qualified nominee. Chief Justice Barak is a celebrated Israeli hero, whose vision and perspective helped Israel to become a more democratic and just society. The insinuation that none of his admirers could be unbiased arbiters of American law is simply outrageous.

The Reform Movement has consistently reiterated the importance of fair, thorough and comprehensive hearings on Supreme Court nominees. The upcoming hearings on Solicitor General Kagan's nomination, and not Mr. Bork's comments, should provide the information necessary for Senators and the American public to determine whether Solicitor General Kagan will adhere to constitutional values and approach every case with an open mind."

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David Saperstein is a Rabbi and an attorney. For more than 30 years he has taught First Amendment Church-State law and Jewish law (including Israeli law) at Georgetown University Law School.

The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism is the Washington office of the Union for Reform Judaism, whose more than 900 congregations across North America encompass 1.5 million Reform Jews, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, whose membership includes more than 1,800 Reform rabbis. Visit www.rac.org for more.



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