GOP Gears Up to Debate on Sotomayor; Dust Off 'Wise Latina' for 47237428 Time

Illustration for article titled GOP Gears Up to Debate on Sotomayor; Dust Off Wise Latina for 47237428 Time

From the Washington Post:

As the Senate prepared to debate the Supreme Court nomination of Sonia Sotomayor on Tuesday, the Republican leadership sought to rally opposition to President Obama's nominee on grounds that she represents a dangerous new standard of judicial "empathy" rather than impartiality in deciding cases.


In a morning floor speech ahead of debate scheduled to begin later in the day, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) acknowledged that Sotomayor has an "impressive" résumé. But he countered Democratic arguments for Sotomayor by citing "the so-called empathy standard" as the main reason he plans to vote against her when the nomination comes to a floor vote on Thursday. He referred to Obama's campaign comments identifying empathy as a key factor in choosing a Supreme Court justice.

Sotomayor, 55, who was born to Puerto Rican parents and raised in a South Bronx housing project, is set to become the first Latina and the third woman to serve on the Supreme Court if, as expected, she is confirmed on a largely party-line vote. Democrats, who have a 60-vote majority in the Senate, are expected to be joined by as many as half a dozen Republicans in voting for Sotomayor, with the rest of the Republican membership opposing her.


Last week, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved the nomination and sent it to the floor on a 13-6 vote. All but one of the committee's Republican members — Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (S.C.) — opposed her.

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