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May 27th, 2009
06:09 PM ET

Here comes justice

Jami Floyd
AC360° Contributor and In Session anchor

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/05/27/sotamayor-smile-obama-announce.jpg caption="Judge Sonia Sotomayor with President Barack Obama after announcing her as his Supreme Court nominee"]
The news is only a day old and, already, I have issues with the coverage.

Issue one: Barack Obama did not pick judge Sotomayor just because she is Puerto Rican or female.

The president picked her, first and foremost, on merit. The woman went to Princeton on scholarships, graduated summa cum laude; she then went on to Yale Law School where she edited the Yale Law Journal. The story of her life journey, including the fact that Sotomayor comes from the projects, only serves to underscore her intellectual prowess, as do her race and gender, since she came up at a time when few women of color went to law school at all. The bottom line: Judge Sotomayor is more qualified than any of the current justices were at the time of their appointments.

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Filed under: 360° Radar • Jami Floyd • Sonia Sotomayor
soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. Terry, TX

    Ms. Floyd....obviously you have never read the oath of the Supreme Court Justices..........
    "I, [NAME], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as [TITLE] under the Constitution and laws of the United States. So help me God."

    The fact that she is a woman, Puerto Rican and has a resume...is not all the ball game...she should interpret the constitution regardless of who is in front her...and obviously she didn't in the reverse discrimination case of the firefighters. No I don't think she cuts the mustard.

    May 28, 2009 at 8:28 am |
  2. Jack

    The republican postion on this issue is shameful and filled only with destain and descent for our current president. To call the president racist for appointing a Latino women to an incredibly segregated area of our goverment is misdisrection only to serve the republican smeer machine. Do Americans honestly think that only white men have been qualified for the supreme court? If no, then why have the majority of supreme court justices been white men. The answer is the inherit racism present in our society. This inherit racism has kept many people from all backgrounds from exceling. What Obama has done sends a message to America that everyone has a chance to excel in America and everyone has a place in our courts. In fact, due to the inherit segregation of our society, it should probably be mandatory that a member from every ethnic background be involved in evolution of our rights as Americans. Do we honestly believe that the lives of a white men provide every perspective and inturrepation of the law? Just as we need a women's persepective we also need a latino perspective, and so on. Finally, some one tell Rush that he's going to kill the republican party. If he continues to galvenize the socially conservative of the republican party they will drive everyone else to jump ship and he will be left with only a small fundamentalist group that will fade into history.

    May 28, 2009 at 1:34 am |
  3. Ronda

    Annie, when was the last time a Democrat supported a Republican nominee?

    Its politics, both sides do the samething over and over again.

    I find it amusing how the Democrats can say and do what they want and nothing is done about it. The tea party participants were labeled racist but I don't here any anger about that.

    We were labled racist because we didn't support Obama and we are White and Republicans. The tea parties were made up of all races but for some reason that wasn't pointed out.

    May 27, 2009 at 10:48 pm |
  4. Ronda

    Marilyn, why do you think they are only playing that part of her comments? They are doing it to start controversy.

    We all know that only Republicans can be racist. Same tatic the Democrats used during the election. If you are a White Republican and you don't support Obama, it is because you are a racist. It can't be that you don't agree with his views, you are a racist.

    May 27, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  5. John Ortiz

    Hey SLM...you honestly believe that graduating summa cum laude from Princteon and graduating from Yale Law School as the editor of the Yale Law review does not represent a "qualified candidate"? Let alone 17 years on the bench? Oh, excuse me, you must think she must be a moutain climber because Yale is a mountain in the Sawatch Range of the Rocky Mountains. You ever hear of the Rocky Mountains?

    May 27, 2009 at 10:30 pm |
  6. Annie Kate

    The GOP is going to object to whoever Obama picks; that does not mean their objections really have merit. This judge seems to have all the top credentials that the other Supremes who are already on the court had when nominated. Plus she represents a constituency that has not been represented on the court before. I think Obama made a good pick – I hope she will be approved swiftly; it would look pretty dumb if the GOP blocked her approval after they were the ones that helped her get to the appellate judgeship she holds now.

    May 27, 2009 at 9:08 pm |
  7. Frank

    I really don't understand "SLM's" comment about perpective judge Sotomayor being picked by president Obama. How does he (or she) know the amount of merit that she possess? Where are the examples of the "more qualified people that are not Hispanic or female?" Furthermore, how in the world does this person know that the president is pandering at all?
    If I were to have doubts about someone, it most certainly isn't about the president's decision. In fact, this person needs to provide some semblance of proof to back up his/her comment.

    May 27, 2009 at 8:51 pm |
  8. Marilyn from MO

    Please if you talk about Judge Sotomayor tonight, read the whole statement she made about being a Latino woman smarter than white men. Don't just take it our of context.

    May 27, 2009 at 8:22 pm |
  9. concern/denver Colorado

    Well whatever the reason was ..We need another choice ...I am worried about her ...

    May 27, 2009 at 8:20 pm |
  10. Pat Tibbs

    SLM, in whose opinion are there "many more qualified people that are not Hispanic or female?" Frankly I doubt that there are but even if you're correct, why not have it all? A woman, a Latina, and a person who is supremely well qualified.

    All justices bring to the bench their life experiences and it's time we had some of those representing low-income, people of color, who were raised by a single mother.

    May 27, 2009 at 7:42 pm |
  11. Mariano

    shes perfect for the job, hey SLM dont be a hater

    May 27, 2009 at 7:18 pm |
  12. Mariano

    I totally agree

    May 27, 2009 at 7:16 pm |
  13. Zak

    I find it BEYOND HILARIOUS that the largely republican criticism that a candidate for a high level government office is being picked based on gender ....after SARAH PALIN. Seriously ?

    Pot...meet Kettle.

    Only this time there is a landslide of evidence pointing to the contrary. She happens to be a she. Other than that I see a person that is extremely well qualified AND understands the times...as they are a'changin'.

    May 27, 2009 at 7:13 pm |
  14. Mari

    @ SLM.............. Every president chooses a judge that represents their own agenda, case in point, Bush choose Alito and Roberts, two very conservative judges.

    President Obama choose Sotomayor. Instead of demeaning, criticizing why don't you do your own research? And find out that....... for example, she was nominated by George HW Bush.

    That in 1992 she was confirmed by the GOP controlled Congress without.... I repeat without .......... opposition!

    May 27, 2009 at 6:57 pm |
  15. SLM

    Trying to convince who that she was picked on Merit?? If she is the best Obama could come up with based on Merit, it only shows Obama really doesn't know what he is doing. There are many more qualified people that are not Hispanic or female. Obama needs to quit pandering and start making informed decisions based on qualifications.

    May 27, 2009 at 6:24 pm |

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