Politics

Kagan Comes to the Capitol

Elena Kagan, President Obama's pick to be the next Supreme Court justice, arrived at the Capitol a little before 10a.m. ET Tuesday under a bright sun, freshly coiffed and clad in royal blue, just steps across from the court she hopes to join.

"Good morning," Kagan responded to reporters, as she walked through the Visitor's Entrance of the Capitol reserved for guests who have appointments.

Waiting for her entourage, which included Phil Schiliro, a former senior aide in the House and now a White House legislative affairs liaison, Kagan was asked (well, it was actually a shout) if she would talk to the cameras. After all, she did say nominees needed to talk more. The nominee shouted back, "Not right now," with a smile, leaving reporters hopeful for a later date.

Kagan's first courtesy call -- of the eight she made today -- was with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-NV, who noted that Kagan's transition from Department of Justice to SCOTUS would be "so meaningful" and said he was "glad you've accepted this assignment from the president."

One reporter attempted a question in the closely choreographed photo-op, but Reid's staff was having none of it. Nominees usually follow a strict protocol of avoiding all questions until the confirmation hearing.

After a half hour meeting with Reid, Kagan was shuttled to a room just off the Senate floor to cool her heels while she waits for her 11am meeting the the chamber's Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell, R-KY.

At one point, Kagan could be seen talking animatedly and laughing with Sen. Carl Levin, D-MI.

It's a long day ahead for the nominee, as she has meetings with several other senators throughout the day.