[Guest post by DRJ]
From the LA Times, Barack Obama has named four officials to his legal team:
Elena Kagan, Harvard Law School Dean — Solicitor General.
Dawn Johnsen, Indiana law school professor — Head, Office of Legal Counsel.
David Ogden, Obama transition team head — Deputy Attorney General.
Tom Perrelli, Obama transition team deputy head — Associate Attorney General.
All four are former Clinton Administration officials. Ogden was Chief of Staff for Attorney General Janet Reno, followed by a position in the DOJ Civil Division from 1999 until 2001. Perilli was counsel to Reno from 1997 to 1999 and then served as deputy assistant attorney general in charge of the Federal Programs Branch of the Civil Division.
Kagan was Deputy Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy and Deputy Director of the Domestic Policy Council (1997-99) and Associate Counsel to the President (1995-96). Prior to accepting a professorship at Harvard Law School, Kagan taught at the University of Chicago Law School, apparently when Obama also taught there. The Office of the Solicitor General is responsible for representing the U.S. in Supreme Court and federal appellate cases. If confirmed, Kagan will be the first female Solicitor General but she reportedly has never argued a case in the Supreme Court.
Johnsen is also a former Clinton Administration member, a legal director for the National Abortion Reproductive Rights Action League (NARAL Pro-Choice America), and Staff Counsel Fellow for the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project in New York. Johnsen has been especially critical of the Bush Administration, including John Yoo’s memo and Bush’s Supreme Court appointments of John Roberts and Samuel Alito because of the threat they pose to Roe v Wade.
No doubt the Clintons approve of these picks. The left should be especially happy with Johnsen.