Handing Them The Weapon
Sam Stein has more on the potential political problems with Kagan over her Goldman connection:
Considering how many actual economists missed the housing bubble in real time, it would be difficult to hold Kagan to a higher standard -- though Goldman was already betting against the housing market by the time the latter report was published. The issue for progressives, however, isn't her lack of long-term market salience. But rather the ties -- however small -- to a firm that is now a black mark on Wall Street and a pariah in Congress. Already, a variety of right-wing blogs have picked up on the findings. And the concern is that Goldman represents the type of superficial connection that could cause political damage.
"I just don't understand why the Administration would want to makes themselves and their nominee vulnerable to the opposition at a time when American skepticism of Wall Street is at an all time high," said a prominent progressive strategist speaking on the condition of anonymity. "This is like handing the Republicans the mantle of populism just for trying to oppose Kagen's confirmation."
I doubt that this law professor is a big Goldman insider. But who knows? There's very little to go on and the neo-liberal bent of the elite is fairly monolithic, so it wouldn't surprise me.
But it really irks the hell out of me that if we are going to have a big confirmation battle (which goes without saying)the administration is going put themselves in a position in which they have to defend Kagan's Goldman Sachs ties while Jeff Sessions prances around like the second coming of William Jennings Bryan. Unless they think it's a terrific idea to convince the American people once and for all that the Republican Party is the people's only defense against Big Government and Wall Street, I can't think of a more counterproductive political fight.