Elena Kagan will be sworn in as the newest U.S. Supreme Court justice tomorrow, after a fairly close vote: 37 Senators voted “nay”.

Here are the most recent Supreme Court nomination votes. Do you see a trend?

  • 1975, John Paul Stevens confirmed, 98-0
  • 1981, Sandra Day O’Connor confirmed, 99-0
  • 1986, Antonin Scalia confirmed, 98-0
  • 1987, Robert Bork not confirmed, 42-58 (pdf)
  • 1988, Anthony Kennedy confirmed, 97-0
  • 1991, Clarence Thomas confirmed, 52-48 (10 Democrats supported the nomination)
  • 1993, Ruth Bader Ginsburg confirmed, 96-3
  • 1994, Stephen Breyer confirmed, 87-9
  • 2005, John Roberts confirmed 78-22 (22 Democrats supported the nomination)
  • 2006, Samuel Alito confirmed 58-42 (only four Democrats supported the nomination)
  • 2009, Sonia Sotomayor confirmed, 68-31 (only nine Republicans supported the nomination)
  • 2010, Elena Kagan confirmed, 63-37 (only four five Republicans supported the nomination)
KATHY GILL, Technology Policy Analyst
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