ABC News' Ariane de Vogue reports:
Senior White House advisor David Axelrod said today that President Obama is "very proud" of his second Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan, and that in the last week she has spent several hours a day fielding questions that might be asked of her at next week’s hearings. She has a "deep and rich" experience in the law and an "appreciation for the proper role that the court plays," he said in a conference call with reporters also joined by White House Counsel Bob Bauer.
Kagan has met with 62 senators from both sides of the aisle since her nomination.
Bauer said that one of the most striking features of the Kagan nomination has been "the breadth of support" she has received from Republicans, including former Solicitor Generals Ted Olson, Kenneth Starr and Paul Clement.
But Axelrod conceded that the hearings will take on a partisan tone. "We think this should be an easy decision for the committee and the Senate. We also live in an extraordinarily polarized political climate," he said. "Therefore we are preparing to make a vigorous case."
Axelrod said that critics of Kagan have been unsuccessful in their attempt to diminish her record. "It’s an opposition in search of a rationale, jumping from one thing to another….I think you see a furious attempt to find some rationale attempt to vote against a nominee who is extraordinarily qualified."
– Ariane de Vogue