Sonia Sotomayor was selected today by President Barack Obama to replace David Souter on the United States Supreme Court. Judge Sotomayor would become the first Hispanic justice to serve on the Court. Her opinions as a judge will be closely vetted in the coming days, but it appears that she will be difficult to broadly categorize. She is a former prosecutor, having worked for Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau. She was first appointed to the federal bench by President George H.W. Bush. Republican Senate reaction was somewhat muted, and could reflect some discomfort with a frontal assault on the first latina nominated for the Supreme Court. From the Washington Post:
Jeff Sessions, senior Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee:
“We will engage in a fair an thorough examination of Ms. Sotomayor’s previous judicial opinions, speeches, and academic writings. . . . Of primary importance, we must determine if Ms. Sotomayor understands that the proper role of a judge is to act as a neutral umpire of the law, calling balls and strikes fairly without regard to one’s own personal preferences or political views.”
John Cornyn, a Republican member of the Senate Judiciary Committee:
“It is my hope that the process will allow her to prove herself to possess the impartiality, integrity, legal expertise and judicial temperament that we have come to expect from those that sit on our highest court. She must prove her commitment to impartially deciding cases based on the law, rather than based on her own personal politics, feelings, and preferences.”
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Quick entry: She needs a filibusterer. Probably won’t get one.
She will make up law in contrast to interpreting the Constitution.
Quick facts: her rulings were overturned 60% of the time. Supreme court reviewing her latest ruling regarding the New Haven Conn. fire fire fighter trial in which she essentially ignored the basic Constitution element. Her Liberal colleague chastised her in writing.
In a video she is seen to mock the idea of constitutional law.