Tales from the Trail

Traders put their money on Kagan to be Supreme Court pick

May 7, 2010

Traders are betting that there is a 75 percent chance that President Barack Obama will decide on U.S. Solicitor General Elena Kagan for the Supreme Court and that she would be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

That’s up 15 points from yesterday, according to the online market Intrade, which means that Kagan is by far the odds-on favorite to be the next Supreme Court justice.

USAObama is expected to announce soon, probably early next week, his selection for the Supreme Court vacancy that will be created by the retirement of liberal Justice John Paul Stevens at the end of the term in June. The president wants whomever he picks confirmed by the Senate before the high court reconvenes in October after its summer break.

Kagan, 50, the U.S. government’s top appellate lawyer and chief advocate before the Supreme Court, has been considered a leading candidate, along with appeals court judges Diane Wood and Merrick Garland.

White House aides have been extremely tight-lipped about the selection process, though wagerers, some legal experts and some Washington, D.C., pundits are predicting it will be Kagan.

There has not been a lot of public controversy about Kagan as Obama weighs his options. If he goes with her, is he making a safe choice?

- Photo credit: Reuters/Jonathan Ernst (Supreme Court building)

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