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Kagan Pick Reveals Savvy Obama Strategy

Prez manages to play it safe and progressive at the same time
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 11, 2010 5:35 AM CDT

(Newser) – President Obama's pick of Elena Kagan for the Supreme Court says more about the president than his nominee, writes Glenn Thrush. The president spoke boldly about the need to stand up to big business in his pre-selection talk while privately seeking a safe pick who could be confirmed without much of a fight, Thrush writes at Politico, dubbing Obama's style "the audacity of caution."

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Kagan's career mirrors Obama's in many ways, writes Thrush, noting that she "has a reputation as a progressive but not necessarily a clear record to match" and has close ties to the political establishment, but no trail of controversial decisions behind her. Kagan may still face a fight, but the early signs suggest that Obama's play-it-safe strategy—"a hybrid of principle and political calculation"—is working, Thrush concludes. (Read more Elena Kagan Supreme Court stories.)

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