Belief Beat

The New York Times is reporting that President Obama will be announcing his nomination of Soliciter General Elena Kagan, who is Jewish, to the Supreme Court this morning, to fill the seat being vacated by Justice John Paul Stevens, who is Protestant.

As I noted in an earlier blog post, the SCOTUS story has become religion news because Stevens’ retirement leaves the court without any Protestants — the majority religion in America. Six of the current justices, including Chief Justice John Roberts and Obama appointee Sonia Sotomayor, are Catholic; two are Jewish.

(Confession: I was rooting for Judge Diane P. Wood, a Protestant, after reading this L.A. Times piece last month — I can personally vouch for the fact that oboists aren’t easily swayed by public opinion!)

The NYT story also notes that Kagan, who was the first female dean of Harvard Law School, would be the third woman on the current court, and that at age 50, the youngest justice of the nine. This could mean that if approved, she would have several decades to help shape SCOTUS decisions — after all, Stevens is retiring at age 90. Anyone know if Protestant men live longer than Jewish women?

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