I haven’t really been writing much about the right-wing campaign against Elena Kagan … mainly because the campaign against her has been so utterly predictable and ineffective.
Conservative groups continue to attack her even though, as Ed Whelan says, “Kagan is a safe bet to be confirmed, but it’s still important that conservatives use the opportunity to educate the public about the proper role of the court.”
And so to that end, right-wing groups are planning on raising (and spending) hundreds of thousands of dollars on opposing Kagan’s nomination:
“We MUST raise $360,000 by June 30 in order to continue the momentum of our life-saving work!’’ [American’s United for Life] president, Charmaine Yoest, wrote to her followers. Activist groups of all persuasions are using similar appeals.
[The Family Research Council’s Tom] McClusky said his group expects to invest $100,000 to $150,000 in a Web and print campaign that highlights Kagan’s opposition to the don’t-ask, don’t-tell policy that forbids openly gay armed service members.
Other groups are also busy with anti-Kagan videos. Curt Levey, director of the conservative Committee for Justice, said his group is producing anti-Kagan TV ads, likely to air shortly before the final confirmation vote.
“How much we can air them, of course, depends on how much money we can raise,’’ Levey said. His group spent about $15,000 last year opposing Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor. Fund-raising currently is ahead of last year’s pace, he said.
Levey hopes to target the ads at Democratic senators in conservative states, such as Ben Nelson of Nebraska and Jon Tester of Montana. In states without expensive media markets, a small investment can have a large impact, he said.
Pressure on Democrats in conservative states will be strong, predicted Gary Marx, director of the conservative Judicial Crisis Network, which is spreading its research into Kagan’s record through new social media and by traditional radio interviews and phone banks.