Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Obama's SCOTUS Pick Is Sotomayor

I made the prediction weeks ago that President Barack Obama would pick Second Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Sonia Sotomayor to take Justice David Souter's place on the Supreme Court because she is both a woman and would become the nation's first Hispanic to serve on the high court. Today, AP sources say Sotomayor is his pick. I would note that Sotamayor received her first appointment to the federal bench by a Republican, President George H.W. Bush. President Clinton later elevated her to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

CORRECTION: I dubbed Sotomayor as becoming the first Hispanic to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court if she is confirmed. That honor actually belongs to Justice Benjamin Cardozo, who served on the high court with distinction in the 1930s. Sotomayor would qualify as the first Latino and the first Hispanic woman to serve on the high court.

8 comments:

Patriot Paul said...

Nice way to shore-up the demographics and say thank-you for the Hispanic and womens' vote. Libertarians and conservatives will not like it, because she is not a strict Constitutionalist. With a wink & nod, she admits higher courts make policy decisions. Just what we don't need...another activist judge.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZiAnWLUMmYg

artfuggins said...

What a great choice. I hope Obama gets at least two more appointments............

Advance Indiana said...

All of these people are claiming this appointment will move the Court further to the left. I find it amusing. You couldn't have found a more reliable vote for the far left in this country than David Souter proved to be. Sotomayor could only match him, not surpass him.

Paul K. Ogden said...

I totally agree AI. Souter is one of the most reliable liberal votes on the court. Sotomayor's appointment will, at best for the D's, hold par.

IndyPaul said...

The most activist nay radical judges of the past 20-30 years have been those on the conservative wing, i.e. Thomas and Alito. Strict construction is a method used by Judges to make policy. Those on the 'liberal' wing have been more respectful of traditional notions of precedent and judicial restraint. Sotomayor is widely regarded as a political centrist, a disappointment to some in the netroots who were hoping for a real activist in the mold of Brennen or Marshall.

The discussion re Cardozo highlights the vagaries of the terms Latino and Hispanic. Cardozo was not Hispanic - he was descended from Portuguese Jews. The common, and IMHO correct definition of Hispanic, that ascribed by the Census Bureau and OMB, is having to do with Spainsh language and culture and doesn't include Portugal. So I believe you were correct at the outset, AI, Sotomayor would be the first Hispanic (and first Latina) Supreme Court Justice.

Advance Indiana said...

People can disagree on Cardozo's ethnic status. My friend Debbie Schlussel, a prominent Jewish American, insists he was Hispanic but is not claimed as one because he was Jewish.

IndyPaul said...

Interesting article on the question:

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gAI5nmLX1RQsIwqKl2XwUCMt3uwAD98E7O5O0

IndyPaul said...

and another:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/27/us/27hispanic.html?_r=1