It was announced today that Elena Kagan has been nominated for a position on the US supreme court. This is a break from the norm – Kagan has never sat as a judge, although she’s solicitor general.
She’s also a Democrat. That Obama is moving the supreme court slowly towards the central ground after decades of a rightward leaning is a hope of a lot of people, and may be the case – before Kagan came Sonia Sotomayor, the first Hispanic woman (and also a Democrat) on the Supreme Court.
But whether this move will make any difference to the likes of Linda Carty remains to be seen. Carty, who has British citizenship, is currently sitting on death row in Texas. Her request for a supreme court hearing was denied last week, which means her only hope is now the mercy of Rick Perry. Not a good outlook. Linda’s family has been on the radio in the UK to promote her case. Reprieve has been pushing to raise awareness of her situation, and claims that if the British government had had earlier access to Linda, they may have been able to do more to help her.
Since the execution of Akmal Shaikh in China, the British government seems to have realized that their clout in diplomatic circles is not what it once was when it comes to British prisoners abroad, but irrespective of the power of the special relationship, it may be too late for Linda.
Hopefully it’s not - there is no execution date as yet. But options are running out fast, and there’s a election coming up for governor here. Texas seems to like their leaders to impose death.