[f], Ideologically, Kagan is part of the Supreme Court's liberal wing: she voted with the liberal bloc in King v. Burwell, 576 U.S. 14-114 (2015), finding that Obamacare's subsidies and individual mandate are constitutional, and in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. 14-556 (2015), which prohibits states from outlawing same-sex marriage.  In 1986 she received a Juris Doctor, magna cum laude, from Harvard Law School, where she was supervisory editor of the Harvard Law Review.
She worked on such issues affecting the Clinton administration as the Whitewater controversy, the White House travel office controversy, and Clinton v. I abhor the military's discriminatory recruitment policy". , Kagan's Harvard colleagues and friends have characterized her as a good conversationalist, warm, and having a good sense of humor. , Like other justices, Kagan makes public appearances when she is not hearing cases. ", On June 17, 1999, Clinton nominated Kagan to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, to replace James L. Buckley, who took senior status in 1996.  The voting was largely along party lines, with five Republicans (Richard Lugar, Judd Gregg, Lindsey Graham, Susan Collins, and Olympia Snowe) supporting her and one Democrat (Ben Nelson) opposing.  Republican Senators criticized Kagan's background as more political than judicial; Kagan responded by promising she would be impartial and fair.  After Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation, she was assigned to the Ninth Circuit, the largest US circuit court by geographic area.
, Kagan's first dissent came in the First Amendment case Arizona Christian School Tuition Organization v. Winn, 563 U.S. 125 (2011).  In a footnote, Kagan set forth a new principle, that congressional districts drawn with race as the dominant factor may be found to be an unlawful racial gerrymander even if they have another goal, such as sorting voters by political affiliation.
 On July 20, 2010, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted 13–6 to recommend Kagan's confirmation to the full Senate.  She also made an effort to hire conservative scholars, such as former Bush administration official Jack Goldsmith, for the traditionally liberal-leaning faculty. Specter said it obscured the way justices actually ruled once on the court.  Kennedy dissented in Luis because he did not think criminal defendants should be treated differently based on how quickly they spent their illegal proceeds.
 During argument, she asked the court to uphold a 1990 precedent that allowed the government to restrict corporations' use of their treasuries to campaign for or against political candidates.