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White House official talking points on Sonia Sotomayor

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WASHINGTON--The White House sent out talking points about Sonia Sotomayor, nominated to the Supreme Court Tuesday by President Obama. Who gets the talking points: Democratic operatives, press secretaries and people who may be called by reporters or show bookers for comment on the nominee.


Here's the scoop on talking points from the White House...


TOPLINE POINTS ON SCOTUS ANNOUNCEMENT

** Not for Distribution**

The President's Approach:

· The President believes that selecting someone to replace Justice Souter is one of his most serious responsibilities. He vowed to seek someone with a sharp and independent mind, and a record of excellence and integrity. As a former constitutional law professor, he believes it paramount to select someone who rejects ideology and shares his deep respect for the Constitutional values on which this nation was founded.

· But, as the President has made clear, upholding those constitutional values requires more than just the intellectual ability to apply a legal rule to a set of facts. It requires a common sense understanding of how laws affect the daily realities of people's lives.

Judge Sonia Sotomayor:

Judge Sonia Sotomayor embodies those qualities -- as someone who brings not only brilliance in the law but a common sense understanding of how the law practically works.
Her American story and three decade career in nearly every aspect of the law provide Judge Sotomayor with unique qualifications to be the next Supreme Court justice.

· She has been hailed as "a role model of aspiration, discipline, commitment, intellectual prowess and integrity" for her ascent to the federal bench from an upbringing in a South Bronx housing project, and as "one of the ablest federal judges currently sitting" for her thoughtful opinions.

Judge Sotomayor's Background:

Born to a Puerto Rican family, Judge Sotomayor grew up in a public housing project in the South Bronx. Driven by her mother's belief in the power of education and her own indefatigable work ethic, Sotomayor excelled in school, graduating as valedictorian of her high school class and winning a scholarship to Princeton University. After graduating summa cum laude, and Phi Beta Kappa, she entered Yale Law School, where she served as an editor of the Yale Law Journal.

Out of law school, Judge Sotomayor became an Assistant District Attorney in Manhattan, where she tried dozens of serious criminal cases over five years and was known as a "fearless and effective prosecutor."

She entered private practice in 1984, and worked as an international corporate litigator handling cases involving everything from intellectual property to banking, real estate and contract law.

Over a distinguished career that spans three decades, Judge Sotomayor has worked at almost every level of our judicial system - as a prosecutor, litigator, trial court and appellate judge -- yielding a depth of experience and a breadth of perspectives that will be invaluable - and is currently not represented -- on our highest court.

Judge Sotomayor's Judicial Track Record

If confirmed for the Supreme Court, Judge Sotomayor would bring more federal judicial experience to the Supreme Court than any justice in 100 years, and more overall judicial experience than anyone confirmed for the Court in the past 70 years. She has been a big-city prosecutor and a corporate litigator, a federal trial judge on the U.S. District Court, and an appellate judge on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

Before she was promoted to the Second Circuit by President Clinton in 1998, she was appointed to the District Court for the Southern District of New York by President George H.W. Bush - a show of bipartisan support that proves good judging transcends political party.

As a trial judge, she earned a reputation as a sharp and fearless jurist who does not let powerful interests bully her into departing from the rule of law. In 1995, Judge Sotomayor ended the baseball strike by issuing an injunction against major league baseball owners.

In 1998, Judge Sotomayor became the first Latina to serve on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, one of the most demanding circuits in the country. She has participated in over 3000 panel decisions and authored roughly 400 opinions, handling difficult issues of constitutional law, to complex procedural matters, to lawsuits involving complicated business organizations.

Judge Sotomayor is widely admired as a judge with a sophisticated grasp of legal doctrine and a keen awareness of the law's impact on everyday life. She understands that upholding the rule of law means going beyond legal theory to ensure consistent, fair, common-sense application of the law to real-world facts.

Known as a moderate on the court, Sotomayor often forges consensus and agreeing with her more conservative nominees far more frequently than she disagrees with them. In cases where Sotomayor and at least one judge appointed by a Republican president were on the three-judge panel, Sotomayor and the Republican appointee(s) agreed on the outcome 95% of the time

Judge Richard C. Wesley, a George W. Bush appointee to the Second Circuit, said "Sonia is an outstanding colleague with a keen legal mind. She brings a wealth of knowledge and hard work to all her endeavors on our court. It is both a pleasure and an honor to serve with her. "

The Confirmation Process

The President is committed to working with the Senate to ensure an orderly and civil confirmation process. The average number of days between nomination and confirmation for the last five Supreme Court justices is 72 days. Justice Roberts was confirmed 72 days after his nomination, and Justice Ginsburg was confirmed in just 50 days.

The President believes it is important for the Senate to vote on Judge Sotomayor's confirmation before the August recess - more than two and a half months away -- to allow the new Justice time to prepare and participate when the Court confers in September and selects cases to be heard this year.

6 Comments

It is truly a fantastic nomination to the Supreme Court that reflects North America's changing majority. Her accomplishments and intelligence is something all American citizens should be proud of but as a Latina I am beaming with pride that my children will see such a nomination and eventually the seating. So many times in our society we focus on the negativity of an ethnic group and the lack of documentation that dehumanizes them. With the nomination of Judge Sotomayor we have opened another door that segregation had kept closed. As a Latina I take pride in my ethnicity and find great strength in my family history especially of the woman and hope to pass that on to my daughters. This is what I see in Judge Sotomayor, a strength of conviction, pride in her past and an eye for the future. When we are blessed with such accomplishments we are also accountable and responsible for our actions. May Judge Sotomayor continue keeping us in her thoughts when making decisions and may we all find strength in her appointment as a Supreme Court Judge of the United States of America.

A GREAT CHOICE, ALL OF US SHOULD BE HAPPY ABOUT
SONIA SOTOMAYER!

She is a liberal hack who has stated, on tape mind you, that the courts are where policy is made. WRONG! Congress makes the laws, it is the job of the judiciary to merely interpret the law, not make your own law. If appointed she will be a disgrace to the bench and harmful to our country.

We would all be happy to see Ms. Sotomayer in any other position. She is a bright and accomplished person.

However, she has been "busted" on videotape expressing the common liberal philosophy of legislating from the bench. This disqualifies her from the position.

The folks in congress are called our Lawmakers.

We do not "appoint" and give a "life term" to anyone that give the power to make Law to.

She has no business in the Supreme Court and must be denied the position.

"Surprise, surprise, Gomers" our President has yet again pandered to the politically correct extreme of our country! Yes, she'll be confirmed because the opposition party represents such a small minority right now and no one in it seems to have the cojones to speak out against P.C. appointments.

D. OLIVER YOU NEED EITHER A COLD SHOWER OR HOT
CUP OF TEA, EITHER WAY YOU ARE WAY OFF BASE!
SONIA SOTOMAYOR IS THE REAL THING, AND YOU KNOW
IT, DON'T LET HANNITY AND ROVE AND CHENEY MAKE
DECISIONS FOR YOU, JUDGE HER FOR WHAT SHE HAS
DONE, AND BUSH SR. KNEW SHE WAS THE REAL THING!
THE TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE, NOT FOX NEWS!

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on May 26, 2009 2:17 PM.

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