SCOTUS: Selected Sotomayor Clips

Here are a few selected clips on issues of import as we head toward day three of the hearings. I’ll be liveblogging the hearings this morning, beginning at 9:30 am ET.

Charlie Savage catches a back and forth that also caught my ear yesterday:

Judge Sotomayor replied that she did not consider the Gonzales v. Carhart ruling to be a precedent making it settled law that health exceptions for abortion laws are constitutionally unnecessary.

“That was, I don’t believe, a rejection of its prior precedents,” she said. “Its prior precedents are still the precedents of the court. The health and welfare of a woman must be — must be a compelling consideration.”

Her answer highlighted an irony of the 2007 ruling. In that case, the majority opinion did not assert that it was overruling the 2000 partial-birth abortion case and striking down health exceptions. Rather, it asserted, based on a congressional finding, that no health exception was necessary for this type of procedure.

Now that’s effective litigation.

Sheryl Gay Stolberg mourns the lack of fiery Latina in the hearing room. Jay Newton-Small sees little passion on display. Journamalism lives. It’s a confirmation hearing, what did they expect? Everyone should have learned the lessons of Bork, most of all a SCOTUS nominee: act high-handed and mercurial during your hearings, and you turn off the very Senators you seek to persuade.

– Conversely, Ann Gerhart sees confidence and warmth.

Eugene Robinson nails identity politics to the wall.

– As Digby points out, AP is having a no good, very bad week of coverage. But Jeff Sessions is having a worse one.  "Garden variety hypocrisy," indeed.

– Glenn Beck? Moh-ron.

– The right-wing Committee for Justice has put together two ads claiming 17-year federal Judge Sotomayor wants to take away your guns and supports terrorism.  It is to laugh.  Except, I’m not kidding.

– For my money, the best moment yesterday was this exchange with Sen. Russ Feingold on Korematsu:


 
50 Responses to "SCOTUS: Selected Sotomayor Clips"
Pade | Wednesday July 15, 2009 05:26 am 1

Thanks Christy,

Love the scissors. I am so enjoying watching this. She is obviously so much smarter than most of her questioners. I do believe some of them are so obtuse that they don’t even realize it. Also the irony is almost more than one can stand without laughing out loud. She gets kudos from me for sure.


Christy Hardin Smith | Wednesday July 15, 2009 05:32 am 2
In response to Pade @ 1

It is a bit of a bizarre charade to watch Senators who have to decide her fate as a candidate asking questions which are not exactly on point — and showing they have a vague understanding rather than a sharp one of particulars in the law, at best.


Christy Hardin Smith | Wednesday July 15, 2009 05:40 am 3

btw, good morning everyone. Gorgeous day here — am just getting the coffee started for the day, so pardon me while I get things brewing…


Pade | Wednesday July 15, 2009 05:44 am 4
In response to Christy Hardin Smith @ 2

Unfortunately I think it says a bit about the intellectual abilities of some of those holding office. I don’t even think they realize how embarassed they shoud be. What does it say about the representative some states have sent? How can we hope for the good outcome to the governing process with these lightweights involved. More, better progressives needed! Good news from California with the addition of Judy Chu.


Christy Hardin Smith | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:05 am 5
In response to Pade @ 4

Yeah — the more just isn’t enough. But finding better progressives has been a tough one. It’s a slow process, I’m afraid — but one that needs doing so badly.


SouthernDragon | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:06 am 6

Mornin’, Christy, pups.

Sotomayor doesn’t have to anything but sit there quietly while the Rethug Senators make fools of themselves. The media highlighting the most egregious (sorry, eg) blatherings doesn’t help them.


Nola Sue | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:10 am 7

I love her poker face. Were I in that spot (ha!), I’d be gaping at Sessions et al as if they were drunk, fools, or both. Oh wait. *g*


Leen | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:12 am 8

Christy last night on Chris Matthews Hardball Chris referenced a Canadian journalist who asked why are the Republicans so wild about Sarah and not so wild about a woman Sonia who really pulled herself up by her boot straps (with her remarkable mother leading). Sonia studied, worked hard, lots of ’sweat equity” Vs. Sarah who does not seem to study, is not a scholar (maybe a great high school basketball player) refuses take advice, and is riding the wave based on her good looks and ability to draw in those who feel smarter or harder everytime Sarah speaks.

This is really worth listening to

Sonia Vs. Sarah
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3036697/

_————————————————————————-

On NPR Dana Milbank just said that Sonia will pass unless they find out that she was ” Former Vice President Cheney’s secret legal advisor”


Christy Hardin Smith | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:12 am 9

You learn that poker face doing trial work — you can’t react in front of the jury or it hurts your client. So you have to learn to school yourself to stay calm and serene on the surface.

That poker face comes in handy a lot in the courtroom. And she’s had years of training as a litigator and then on the bench. Useful stuff.


eCAHNomics | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:13 am 10
In response to Leen @ 8

Sarah has charisma (whatever that is) and Sonia doesn’t. Rs can’t see beneath the surface.


Christy Hardin Smith | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:13 am 11
In response to Christy Hardin Smith @ 9

Ooops — 9 was for Nola Sure — I forgot to click reply.


bgrothus | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:14 am 12

GM, Christy. I will not be able to participate today at all as I am on the road for the day. Thanks for your work, will be reading the threads later.

Overall, I like much of what I have seen and heard from her. I know there is the odd ruling here and there and uncertainty that will not be resolved through the hearings.

It seems like the move is toward progress from the origin of the appointment, and I think Sotomayor may live up to her promise, the “wise Latina” she aspires to be.


Christy Hardin Smith | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:16 am 13
In response to bgrothus @ 12

I’m just glad The Peanut is holding out thus far this week. I’ve set up a play date for her this afternoon which will — hopefully — help a bit with the tedium of mom watching the Senate bloviate. Not quite so interesting when you are 6, I’m afraid.


SouthernDragon | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:17 am 14
In response to eCAHNomics @ 10

The Rethugs would like to see Sarah in Playboy or Hustler, Sotomayor, not so much.


bgrothus | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:19 am 15

There is wisdom in 6 year-olds, que no?


foothillsmike | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:19 am 16
In response to SouthernDragon @ 14

Rethugs like their Bathshebas


SouthernDragon | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:22 am 17
In response to foothillsmike @ 16

Actually, one of the first comments I heard from a Rethug at work about Sarah when she was announced for McSFB’s campaign was that she’d look good in Playboy and wondered when they’d do a spread (no pun intended) on her.


Leen | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:23 am 18
In response to eCAHNomics @ 10

Blowjob appeal


SouthernDragon | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:24 am 19

Off to swim in the great capitalist cesspool.

US KIA Afghanistan: 739

How many more?

Be good to yourselves, and all other living things.

Namaste


DonQuisadorme | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:27 am 20

During the enhanced interrogation by the truly awful Jeff Sessions, I kept hoping that Sotomayor would respond with something like “No, Senator, a judge’s prejudices can never be allowed to affect a decision. Even if I were batshit fucking crazy enough to consider the NAACP a Communist organization, it would not affect my work.”


barbara | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:28 am 21
In response to eCAHNomics @ 10

And they have the charismatic Clarence Thomas as a model.


Nola Sue | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:29 am 22

I hear you, Christy. Mine is now 8 and I’ve juggled the work from home thing over the years, too. (Camp this week, though, so I get to indulge a bit!)

A quick memory from my youth when I wasn’t much older than our kids. My mom, who worked outside the home most of my school years, was for some reason at home during the summer of the Watergate hearings. I have vivid memories of our days including a bunch of that, and I believe my mother’s civic interests and my exposure from a young age have been good for me. Your Peanut and mine will benefit, too, I’m sure.

Thanks for all you do!


Leen | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:30 am 23

Christy have you taken the Peanut to the Wilds in Ohio. I think you are not far. Really worth it. Great family trip
http://www.thewilds.org/


Christy Hardin Smith | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:31 am 24
In response to Leen @ 23

I haven’t — but that looks like something she’d love. Thanks!


Leen | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:31 am 25

Sonia looks relaxed. Leahy and Sotomayor on time


eCAHNomics | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:35 am 26
In response to barbara @ 21

I’m tempted to respond with a racist-tinged comment, but I’ll hold my tongue like a good politically correct librul.


eCAHNomics | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:36 am 27

Oh, geez, starting the day with wise Latina. Can’t take it another time.

Luckily I’m in for just about 10 minutes to load another audiobook disc on my ipod.


DonQuisadorme | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:37 am 28
In response to DonQuisadorme @ 20

Or, better, I really really wish that she’d say “Senator Sessions, whatever prejudices or biases I may have, they have no effect on my judicial work, and that is why, sir, I am a Federal judge and you are not.”


Leen | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:39 am 29

Cornyn back to her speech. She clearly explained that her statement was to women and men who were in law school and many were Hispanic women that she was trying to inspire and encourage these students. Letting them know that their life experiences could enrich the legal system.

How many friggin times is she going to have to go over that statement


eCAHNomics | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:39 am 30
In response to DonQuisadorme @ 28

Now, now, that wouldn’t be showing judicial temperament.


Raven | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:40 am 31
In response to Leen @ 29

It’s all they have, it’s not going to stop until the stupid hearing is over.


biffdiggerence | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:41 am 32
In response to Nola Sue @ 7

Sotomayor didn’t squeeze out any puppies.


eCAHNomics | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:42 am 33
In response to Raven @ 31

You got that right.


Leen | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:44 am 34

Bill maher was on Hardball last night he said something like. It’s as if Latina Women have had their boots on the neck of White men for decades. So funny
Maher on the road
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3036697/

Sorry to repeat but the clip where Matthews takes the article by a Canadian Journalist about why the Republicans like Sarah (blowjob appeal I believe) and don’t like Sonia Sotomayor “real sweat equity” a real example of someone who has pulled themselves by their boot straps (really honor the way Sonia pays tribute to her remarkable mother)
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3036697/
Sonia Vs. Sarah
…..really exposes the superficial reasons for admiration for Sarah Vs Sonia


Sufilizard | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:45 am 35

Well I have my morning of watching a smart Latina woman being judged by dim-witted Republicans and then this afternoon I get to watch my daughter get her 1-year-old calf judged at the 4-H fair. We’ll see how the 4-H judge compares to dim-witted Republicans, but the 4-H people seem a little confused on how to react to our sustainably-raised animals – rare breeds eating diets and living lifestyles closer to what they would in nature.


Nola Sue | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:47 am 36
In response to Leen @ 29

They’re all just trying to score points, and they have to shoot at the same damn basket. Given Cornyn’s constituency, however, I’m a little interested in how hard he’ll push.

I also think this is a high-risk strategy for the R’s. Sessions and Graham didn’t, IMHO, help themselves much yesterday at all.


oldgold | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:47 am 37
In response to Sufilizard @ 35

Grassley might be at both events!


Raven | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:48 am 38

The conservative judicial activist group Committee for Justice released an ad on Tuesday connecting Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the ’60s radical and Obama campaign scourge Bill Ayers. The ad begins with a shot of Ayers, but it quickly traverses to the current Supreme Court confirmation process.

“Remember Barack Obama’s buddy Bill Ayers? The unrepentant terrorist who bombed American buildings in the 70s? Turns out President Obama has done it again, picking someone for the Supreme Court, Judge Sonia Sotomayor, who led a group supporting violent Puerto Rican terrorists. Is this radical judge the type of person America needs sitting on our highest court? What is he thinking? What was she thinking.”


DonQuisadorme | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:49 am 39
In response to Nola Sue @ 36

They have nothing to lose in their constituencies. Senator Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III is not going to lose a single voter because he’s an unreconstructed racist sociopath — they like him that way.


Leen | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:49 am 40

So who thinks that Lindsay Graham will vote for her because “elections matter” I think he will vote yes.

What is the Hispanic population in South Carolina?

Hispanics have eye on GOP senators’ Sotomayor vote
“Republicans must defend Senate seats next year in three states that, according to 2008 Census Bureau estimates, have high percentages of Hispanics: Arizona (29.6%), Utah (11.6%) and Florida (20.6%).”
http://www.usatoday.com/news/w…..anic_N.htm


Waccamaw | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:53 am 41
In response to Christy Hardin Smith @ 2

When someone else wrote the questions for you, it’s likely your insufficiency of knowledge will be pretty obvious, no? *G*


Leen | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:53 am 42
In response to Leen @ 40

What will Kyl do?

Hispanics Arizona (29.6%),

Cornyn/ Texas.


Waccamaw | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:54 am 43
In response to SouthernDragon @ 6

Sotomayor doesn’t have to anything but sit there quietly while the Rethug Senators make fools of themselves.

A caller on the Washington Journal made much the same observation this morning. :-)


perris | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:57 am 44

– For my money, the best moment yesterday was this exchange with Sen. Russ Feingold on Korematsu:

could you site the dialogue you found compelling and how you think it was handled by ss?


Nola Sue | Wednesday July 15, 2009 06:59 am 45
In response to DonQuisadorme @ 39

First, not all Alabama Rs are happy with blatantly “unreconstructed racist sociopath” types — things have actually been shifting there locally. And while some may sorta tolerate it, they don’t like when it gets aired too visibly. (For better or worse, I actually have some familiarity with AL Rs.)

But I was really referring to some of the other aspects of their questioning, not the actual content but the cosmetics.

Graham came off as obnoxious wrt the “temperament” line of questioning and prolly didn’t help himself with women. (Assertive men = good; assertive women = emotional, b*tch.) Sessions’ repetition on the “wise Latina” stuff came across as kind of stoopid.


GregB | Wednesday July 15, 2009 07:01 am 46

These dipshits(Cornhole Cornyn, Jefferson Davis Sessions, etc.) seem concerned that Sotomayor’s summary dismissal of the Ricci claim showed a lack of empathy.

Empathy for whites folks is quite important to these cracker mofos.

-G


twolf1 | Wednesday July 15, 2009 07:01 am 47

GregB | Wednesday July 15, 2009 07:05 am 48

The fragility of those on the political right seems all encompassing.

Delicate flowers, all of them.

-G


DonQuisadorme | Wednesday July 15, 2009 07:07 am 49
In response to Nola Sue @ 45

http://www.surveyusa.com/clien…..5b5c5b861d

Senator Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III enjoys a 62% approval rating, the highest it’s been in 40 months. He can be as obnoxious and crazy as he wants to be.


egregious | Wednesday July 15, 2009 07:12 am 50
In response to SouthernDragon @ 6

Hey S.D. – not to worry, I want people to use the word ‘egregious’ – go for it.


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