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SG Kagan and the Clinton White House Papers

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When Chief Justice Roberts was nominated to the Supreme Court, I got a call from a colleague from my time in the White House Counsel’s office during the Reagan years. The papers from the Chief Justice’s time in the Counsel’s office would be released, I was told, and some would have my name on them, so I might be getting a call from some media outlet on the subject.

That didn’t happen, and the Chief Justice’s papers from his time as an Associate Counsel were not controversial. But their release then sets a precedent for Solicitor General Kagan’s time in the Clinton White House, and the GOP senators should insist on the same scope of release as applied to the Chief Justice. We have to assume that the SG’s papers from her time in the West Wing —both as Associate Counsel and as domestic policy advisor— will be part of the SCOTUS confirmation proceedings, and those will be interesting indeed, especially when it comes to some of the executive privilege arguments developed during those years.

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