The NRA has announced its opposition to the Elena Kagan nomination. By picking such a weak nominee, Obama was really just asking for it:
We have carefully examined the career, written documents and public statements of nominee Elena Kagan and have found nothing to indicate any support for the Second Amendment. On the contrary, the facts reveal a nominee who opposes Second Amendment rights and is clearly out of step with mainstream Americans.
Therefore, the NRA is strongly opposed to Kagan’s confirmation to the Court.
See, here’s the thing. She’s got no record to speak of. No proven philosophy. No demonstrated commitment to progressive causes, or women’s causes, or, hell, any causes at all for that matter. The only thing that Democrats could use to justify supporting her nomination is that Barry Picked Her.
And that might have worked! As long as nobody serious and organized bothered to point out any of the reasons to object to the nomination. Since the NRA is both serious and organized, they seized on the flaws in Kagan’s background and are using them to whip Republicans into opposition.
If Obama had picked someone that liberals could rally behind, there would be a groundswell of support for the nominee to stand against the NRA’s objections. As it is, the NRA is making essentially the same complaints that many on the left have been making ever since Kagan was named as the nominee: (a) we don’t know anything about her philosophy, (b) she has no relevant experience, and (c) there are reasons to suspect she might actually do more harm than good. See, for example, Glenn’s excellent coverage here.
If the Administration had listened to Greenwald’s substantive objections before the nomination, and picked someone that liberals could support without holding their noses, they could lean on that support now. Instead, liberals have no reason to rally behind this nominee, and so there are no voices to oppose the NRA. And if her nomination fails now because she is a blank slate, well, Obama only has himself to blame.
[this post was edited later that night for clarity]