SCOTUS: Justice In The Balance With A Sotomayor Nomination?

The White House has sent out an official press notice that their SCOTUS announcement will come at 10:15 am ET. NBC News, the AP, NYTimes and SCOTUSblog all indicate that the upcoming SCOTUS pick will be Judge Sonia Sotomayor of the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals.  I am also hearing WH confirmation that it is, indeed, Sotomayor. 

Pete Williams just went with the details live on MSNBC.

As I said earlier, Sotomayor has a compelling personal story to bring to the nomination table:

She grew up in the projects in the Bronx, lost her father at the age of nine, and was raised along with her brother (who is now a doctor) by her single mother. That’s some life experience to bring to the table.

She began school having much more Spanish than English, but managed to graduate in top levels of her classes all the way through. And went on to become the editor of a law journal at Yale.

She has worked both in a district attorney’s office as a trial lawyer in New York as well as in private practice before her seat on the 2nd circuit, so she has trial chops to bring to the table as well.

She was appointed to the bench originally by George H.W. Bush and is considered, even by conservatives who have been before her, as a moderate judge who is particularly well-versed in the law and well-prepared. That makes for good pushback on GOP antics, it’s just a pity we have to think politics and not legal temperament.

Tom at SCOTUSblog hits a similar end note this morning:

Republicans cannot afford to find themselves in the position of implicitly opposing Judge Sotomayor. To Hispanics, the nomination would be an absolutely historic landmark. It really is impossible to overstate its significance. The achievement of a lifetime appointment at the absolute highest levels of the government is a profound event for that community, which in turn is a vital electoral group now and in the future….

For Republican Senators to come after Judge Sotomayor is not only hopeless when it comes to confirmation (something that did not deter Democrats in their attacks on Roberts and Alito) but a strategy that risks exacting a very significant political cost among Hispanics and independent voters generally, assuming that the attacks aren’t backed up with considerable substance.

Much more to come on this as the day moves forward, including analysis on opinions and weak points as well as strengths.

Suddenly, the Ben Nelson fishing expedition on Fox News over the weekend comes into sharper focus: he’s making a move while his vote still has cash value. And before one of the other "floaters" cuts a deal of their own.

But, for now, let’s see what President Obama has to say…and whether they send Jon Kyl or John Cornyn out to make the Federalist Society case in rebuttal, or someone else entirely.  Because I can’t quite agree with Tom at SCOTUSblog that the GOP will give Sotomayor any sort of pass. 

I’m bracing myself for the inevitable wave of shitstorm kabuki.  And I hope the WH has planned for the same.

For readers who have had experience with Judge Sotomayor, let’s hear some courtroom stories.  Please.

 
62 Responses to "SCOTUS: Justice In The Balance With A Sotomayor Nomination?"
Millineryman | Tuesday May 26, 2009 05:54 am 1

Category 5 shit storm is my forecast.


Christy Hardin Smith | Tuesday May 26, 2009 05:58 am 2
In response to Millineryman @ 1

Mine, too — blast faxes at the ready, I’m certain.


Blue Texan | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:00 am 3

Because I can’t quite agree with Tom at SCOTUSblog that the GOP will give Sotomayor any sort of pass.

He hasn’t been paying attention.


Christy Hardin Smith | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:02 am 4
In response to Blue Texan @ 3

He seemed to think that attacking Sotomayor would be politically difficult, and that they’d hold their tougher fire for the next round since it is very likely that there will be one if not two more.


foothillsmike | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:08 am 5

Judge Sotamayor is 55 and was diagnosed with diabetes at age 8.


Raven | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:10 am 6

I’m sure some of the erstwhile Firepups will find plenty to complain about.


katymine | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:11 am 7

It will be shit storm….. the normal watb GOP tissy fit……..

Boner with his legislate from the bench….
Conyon with his OMG OMG she is a brown woman
And never forget my (ewww) senator where he will get all pickle faced and would not touch her with a 20ft pole…..


Todd | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:13 am 8

I’m interested in the timing of this ie on the same day that the California Supremes hand down their verdict on prop 8. This Supreme nom is going to dominate the news cycle. Was this intentional? It just popped into my head as I was reading about Sotomayor. Am I nuts?


jayt | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:15 am 9

She was appointed to the bench originally by George H.W. Bush…

troubling – except to the extent that it might mess with the repub game plan.

Aw, who am I trying to kid? They’re gonna go balls out at her, same as they would anybody else…..


Christy Hardin Smith | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:15 am 10
In response to Todd @ 8

I don’t think the two are related, honestly. I’m hearing that Obama met with Sotomayor last Thursday and was really impressed. Made up his mind over the weekend — and wanted to hit the ground running on the nomination so that conformation could occur before the next term begins so she’ll have time to hire clerks and prep for arguments. It’s a pragmatic thing, is what I’m hearing.


twolf1 | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:17 am 11

Oh joy, msnbc is bringing tweety in to cover the scotus announcement


Raven | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:18 am 12

On June 25, 1997, she was nominated by former President Bill Clinton to the seat she now holds, which was vacated by J. Daniel Mahoney. Her nomination was approved overwhelmingly by the Senate Judiciary Committee, but became “embroiled in the sometimes tortured judicial politics of the Senate,” as some Republicans said they did not want to consider the nomination because elevating Sotomayor to the Appeals Court would enhance her prospects of being appointed to the Supreme Court.[18][19] An anonymous senator put a secret hold on her nomination, blocking it for over a year. Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy called the length of the hold “disturbing,” “petty,” and “shameful,” also noting that at that time, “[o]f the 10 judicial nominees whose nominations have been pending the longest before the Senate, eight are women and racial or ethnic minority candidates.”[20]

wiki


BooRadley | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:18 am 13

Thanks Christy.

Any insight into how Judge Sotomayer is on separation of powers/unitary executive/state secrets …..


TheraP | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:19 am 14

Political Theater! I’m just gonna sit back and watch it happen!


cbl2 | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:19 am 15
In response to Christy Hardin Smith @ 4

Good Morning Christy and Firedogs,

good old fashion incredulity – been there. he can not imagine anyone being that politically clueless and tone deaf – I was simply slackjawed at their immigration theatre – letting Tancredo and Sensenbrenner run hatefully amok threatening their Party’s gains with Hispanic voters and we all know how that worked out – they went from 43% of the hispanic vote in 04 to 13% in 08 -
s0 yes Tom, they are that stoopid

Beauregard Sessions, Come On Down !


foothillsmike | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:19 am 16
In response to jayt @ 9

HW Bush also picked Souter. I don’t think that his nominations give anyone a pass as far as rethugs are concerned.


Beerfart Liberal | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:20 am 17

i think it’ll be the same ol kabuki, Christy. We’ve pretty much known she was a front runner if not the front runner. They’ll keep their ever-shrinking base of loons happy during herarings and on the floor and she’ll be confirmed. I can’t see them fillibustering. But I can’t see almost anything they do. So they probably will.


Raven | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:22 am 18

you guys sure loves some kabuki don’t ya?


cbl2 | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:24 am 19

bobh | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:24 am 20

I recall the Republican enthusiasm for the Horatio Alger story of Mr. Clarence Thomas from Pinhead, GA. But presumably their enthusiasm for this kind of story doesn’t extend to Democrats.

Does anyone know whether there is a Mr. Sotomayor?


SouthernDragon | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:25 am 21
In response to Raven @ 12

Ain’t nothing changed. If it’s not a WASP male the Rethugs are gonna pull every stunt they can think of, and all’s they got is stunts.


Beerfart Liberal | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:26 am 22
In response to Beerfart Liberal @ 17

what ahppened to my thing? not much to say anyway. no loss.


katymine | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:26 am 23

Oh there will be hearings….. they will try to rip her to shreds…. discredit her… kind of like they did Anita Hill but the issue is that the senate only needs 51 to confirm her and surely there are enough Democrats with balls to get that done…..


jayt | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:26 am 24
In response to foothillsmike @ 16

HW Bush also picked Souter. …

didn’t Poppy say that that was one turned out to be one of his biggest disappointments?


JimWhite | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:27 am 25

I’m wondering if all the kabuki over Sotomayor will allow Johnsen to go on to confirmation…


Raven | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:27 am 26
In response to bobh @ 20

Ouch:

In 1976 Sotomayor married while still a student at Princeton University, and divorced in 1983.[4]. She has since expressed an unbounded attitude toward traditional constraints of marriage. In an interview with the Sacramento Bee she spoke of her relationship with her husband: “We love each other very much and make no qualms about showing it, within the realm of public decency of course. That is to say, in public we are normal, but at home we are as affectionate and exhibitionistic as we want, with whomever we want.” Others, including a former Princeton classmate Tarin McDaniels, have suggested they have had sexual relationships with Sotomayor and her husband.


RevBev | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:27 am 27

Christy, Im guessing you are glad to be home for this….and we’re glad you are, too. We still want to hear some of your trip stories when things slow down!…Bev


Christy Hardin Smith | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:30 am 28
In response to Raven @ 26

One of the things I always wonder when something like that shows up in w wiki is when it was inserted into the entry — and by whom for what purpose. *g*

Maybe it’s my innate cynicism, but I never trust something that can be edited on the fly by unknown, unseen hands.


RevBev | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:30 am 29
In response to Raven @ 26

Well, J. Thomas may perk right up.


Raven | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:31 am 30

Gotcha, maybe I shouldn’t have pulled it.


Raven | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:33 am 31

It’s gone.


katymine | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:33 am 32
In response to Raven @ 26

gossip gossip….. What does that have to do with all the tea in China?

It is a supreme judge….. ya repugs dismiss a liberal who pulled themselves up by their bootstraps……… only repugs can do that…….. Hatch & Cornyn has voted for her twice in the past….


BooRadley | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:34 am 33
In response to Raven @ 26

Since the GOP never brought it up before, I guess they’ll argue that “frolicking” is ok for a Judge on the appeals court, but not on the SC.


WarOnWarOff | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:34 am 34

Po Villagers gonna have to spend teh hot steamy summer in DC.

All together now…awwwwwwwwwwwwwww.


VADEM | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:34 am 35

I’m happy with this pick. Can’t wait for the rethug’s screeching. Probably by the end of the day they will manage to alienate every Hispanic in the country.

And she may even have some empathy.


AZ Matt | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:34 am 36

I suspect there will be a few floaters in this political bowl besides Nelson. Liarman for one. Then every Republican out there. Going to have to do alot of flushing.


katymine | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:34 am 37

OK…. have to go get ready for my chemo trip to Mayo….. Have a wonderful day……


Raven | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:35 am 38
In response to katymine @ 32

Someone asked about her marital status, I looked on Wiki and that was there.


Petrocelli | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:35 am 39
In response to Raven @ 26

BREAKING: Male SCOTUS are overwhelmingly in favor of Sotomayor filling
Souter’s vacancy … film at eleven *g*


perris | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:36 am 40

For Republican Senators to come after Judge Sotomayor is not only hopeless when it comes to confirmation (something that did not deter Democrats in their attacks on Roberts and Alito) but a strategy that risks exacting a very significant political cost among Hispanics and independent voters generally, assuming that the attacks aren’t backed up with considerable substance.

the republicans are far more efficient mounting a filibuster then the democrats, in point of fact there are politicians calling themselves democratS who are actually republicans

and the base simply does not care about repercussions

in addition there is a recording of sotomeyer saying something along the lines “policy is amde at the local appeal court” or something similar, she then goes on to disclaim her statement but it is there

this will probably be a fight

ps

the last thing I want to see is the president complaining about an “up or down vote”, we went balistic when it was their turn and I will defend their right for filibuster


JimWhite | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:36 am 41

Has Scrapple said anything about her yet?


BayStateLibrul | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:36 am 42

All baseball fans rejoice…
She ended the strike, she will burn Scalia and Thomas at the stake.


Petrocelli | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:36 am 43
In response to katymine @ 37

{{{{{katymine}}}}}


BooRadley | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:38 am 44
In response to Petrocelli @ 43

Seconded.


SouthernDragon | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:41 am 45

((((((katymine))))))


Beerfart Liberal | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:42 am 46
In response to BayStateLibrul @ 42

that’s right.


JimWhite | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:46 am 47

Take care, katymine.


Raven | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:50 am 48

NOW supports her! Amazing.


IwasWordsmith | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:51 am 49

Totally off-topic. I’m looking for something called ‘persspectives’ – I cannot for the life of me think of the correct title/name. I’m looking for an article I read on Sotomayer there, along with a national health report.


cbl2 | Tuesday May 26, 2009 06:54 am 50

For readers who have had experience with Judge Sotomayor, let’s hear some courtroom stories. Please

.02 from a Big Orange diarist here

still googling for more


Prairie Sunshine | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:00 am 51
In response to Raven @ 12

Maybe it’s time for the secret hold to go.

Past time, eh?


pbfishtaco | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:01 am 52

The term “floaters” takes on new meaning when drinking my coffee.


Christy Hardin Smith | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:01 am 53
In response to katymine @ 37

It’s so great to see you. WIll be thinking about you today and hope things go easier for you. Gentle hugs, hon.


Raven | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:01 am 54
In response to Prairie Sunshine @ 51

Or cranked back up!


FrankProbst | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:02 am 55

How long until the right calls her a lesbian and says that this is the “gay seat”? I’m going with two hours. What’s your over/under?


Christy Hardin Smith | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:03 am 56

btw, fresh take on Sotomayor for you here…


CalGeorge | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:03 am 57

“She was appointed to the bench originally by George H.W. Bush and is considered, even by conservatives who have been before her, as a moderate judge… .”

That doesn’t sound good.


Prairie Sunshine | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:04 am 58
In response to katymine @ 37

katymine! so glad to see you here. Wishin’ you safe travels…and good outcome…for your Mayo venture.


Christy Hardin Smith | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:05 am 59
In response to CalGeorge @ 57

It’s only not good if you think judges should judge politically and not based on the rule of law.


Twain | Tuesday May 26, 2009 07:12 am 60

I think this is a very good choice for the SC and a finger directly in the eye of the Rs.


goldpearl | Tuesday May 26, 2009 08:07 am 61

christy/raven

in light of what followed it – i think aisle 26 needs to be reviewed


VJBinCT | Tuesday May 26, 2009 10:33 am 62

The GOP would complain if Obama nominated Robert Bork. Not sufficiently conservative by today’s standards!


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