Kagan thanks Lugar, cites 'courage' in vote

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Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan is thanking former U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar for voting to put her on the bench.

Lugar's votes for Kagan and Justice Sonia Sotomayor were among issues that sparked tea party outrage and cost him his seat last year. Kagan said Monday night that his votes were "brave" and took "courage."

Tea party backers and national conservative groups helped oust Lugar in last year's Republican primary.

Kagan was speaking at a judicial conference in Indianapolis. Chief Justice John Roberts also thanked Lugar for his help in securing his place on the bench. Lugar led Roberts through his confirmation process in 2005 as his home state senator.

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