Press Release

June 28, 2010
"At its heart, our Constitution and the rule of law is about people - We the People."

Washington, DC –
U.S. Senator Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, used his opening statement at the confirmation hearing for Solicitor General Elena Kagan to be the next Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States to outline the ”
very tangible impact on all our lives.


“The Supreme Court and the Constitution are at the foundation of our rule of law that is supposed to protect Americans from the abuses of power- abuses of government and abuses of big business,”
Senator Cardin said in his statement.
Excerpts of his statement are below. Text and video of his full statement are available at


“If you have children, if you work for a living, if you are a woman, if you vote, if you care about the air we breathe or the water we drink, you need to pay close attention to this confirmation hearing and the work of the Supreme Court. The Constitution has a very tangible impact on all our lives. It is the foundation of our rule of law that is supposed to protect us from the abuses of power- abuses of government, abuses of big business. The authors of the Constitution understood the timeless idea that Justice was paramount.


“I believe that our next Associate Justice and the whole Supreme Court should be guided by legal precedent and the best traditions of the Supreme Court in advancing constitutional rights for individuals against the abuses of power, whether by government or businesses, even as our world continues to change and evolve.


“Some change has not been for the better, I have been troubled by the increasing number of 5-4 decisions over the last five years in which a divided Supreme Court reversed decades of progress and precedent with rulings that side with powerful corporate interests rather than protecting individual rights.


“I welcome the American public to these hearings as we open a window to the Supreme Court and shine a light on the critical role the Constitution and the rule of law plays in all our lives. I come to these hearings not solely as a U.S. Senator, a legislator, and a lawyer, but as a husband, father, and grandfather. Every ruling made by the Supreme Court that continues to uphold the constitutional protections that keep my granddaughters and their future safe and secure is a victory. Every Supreme Court ruling that opens the door to abuses of power, by the government or big corporations, by over-turning long-standing precedent or reversing Congressional intent, puts my granddaughters, and your granddaughters, and your children at greater risk. I will do all I can within my power to protect my family and every American family from such risks.”


Senator Cardin’s full opening statement for the Supreme Court confirmation hearing can be found at