Monday, July 13, 2009

LIVE BLOG 7/13/09: Sonia Sotomayor Hearings Begin Today

President Barack Obama's pick to fill his first U.S. Supreme Court vacancy, Sonia Sotomayor, goes before a Senate hearing today. Most people believe she already has enough votes to win the confirmation. If selected, Sotomayor will be the first Latino justice on Supreme Court. Senator Patrick Leahy said, "Hers is a success story that all Americans can take pride in."

However, the hearings will be interesting to watch. What I will be watching for is the Republicans' approach to the hearings. The sharpest comments about her so far came Sunday from Sen. Jeff Sessions (R) of Alabama, the senior Republican on the committee. Jeff Sessions, by the way, was nominated for Federal Judgeship in 1986 but was refused. Why? Due to his "gross insensitivity" on racial issues. Some of Session's comments: 1) said KKK was not so bad until he found out some of them smoked marijuana. 2) Said NAACP & ACLU were "un-American" and "Communist-inspired" because they "forced civil rights down the throats of people." Later, Sessions said he made these comments "in jest."

I will be LIVE BLOGGING the hearings today and periodically throughout the week(s) of the hearing. I will be updating this blog throughout the day.
Capitol Hill - Senate Judiciary Committee Hearings:
10:00 am Sen. Patrick Leahy (D) Chairman of the Panel welcomes Sonia Sotomayor. Invites Sotomayor to introduce her family. Leahy provides introductory remarks and cites Sotomayor's many significant accomplishments (education, community, as a Prosecutor and Judge).
10:15 am Sen Jeff Sessions (R) critiques Soniamayor. He cites her "Wise Latina" comments and the Firefighter case, entering them into the record.
Sessions reveals himself when he said: "Empathy for one is prejudice against another." (A clue into Republicans' desire to end Affirmative Action)
Then goes into Gun Control and Pharmaceuticals. Asks American People to follow the hearings.
(We can see what we can expect from Sessions. Pundits are saying Sessions came out early and hit her with both barrels -- what we can expect to see from the Republicans who bash her.)
10:30 am Sen Orrin Hatch (R) discusses method for hearings. References then Sen. Obama's critique of nominee Brown, Justices Alito and Roberts.
Sessions said "extreme left" bashed a plaintiff from a previous Sotomayor case and will that plaintiff "Frank Ricci" will be speaking at the hearings as a Republican witness. Sessions said this was wrong. (I will be posting a blog about this case so you will be aware of this issue before Thursday's hearings.)
Hatch closed with positive comments about Sotomayor.
(during break, someone made some type of outburst and they were escorted out of the room - no outbursts allowed -- Male: "What About the Unborn.")
10:40 am Dianne Feinstein (D) Sotomayor a warm and intelligent woman. Strengthen Supreme Court.
10:47 am Senator Charles Grassley (R) Abide the law and the Constitution, not judging based on empathy.
11:00 am Russ Feingold (D) Sotomayor - wisdom, judgement, understanding of impact; deeper appreciation of democracy. Be wary of judicial activism words being said at the hearings. Glad Sotomayor will be able to answer unsubstantiated comments bias. Sotomayor is cautious and careful approach to judging. Out of context words in a speech do not apply to her fine record. Impartial justice - Fine Qualities - living proof this country is moving in the right direction. Judge's nomination example -American Dream. She will serve with distinction.
11:07 am Sen Jon Kyl (R) Serve on merits, not ethnicity. "Wise Latina Woman" remarks. Biases, prejudices. Can you control it. Judge the case fairly. Critiques Obama - oppose Roberts. Judges should not be empathetic (no heart).
11:16 am Sen Chuck Schumer (D) Record shows she is in mainstream. Strongly supports Rule of Law. Sotomayor delves thoroughly into the facts of each case. I challenge every Republican to examine random samplings. She learns facts and comes to a decision irrespective of personal experience. She supports rule of law and the constitution.
11:22 am Sen Lindsey Graham (R) Unless you have a complete meltdown, you will be confirmed and I don't think you will have a meltdown. Your courtcases are fine. But when it comes to speeches, if I said anything like that, my career would be over. You need to understand that. You are not racist. When you take the robes off and say the words "better" that is a problem. If I applied then Sen. Obama's standards, you couldn't stand up. You are a strong advocate and you will speak your mind. You have good character and have had a full and fruitful life. You are passionate. You stood out and we want you to speak your mind.
11:33 am Sen Cardin (D)
12:05 pm Sen John Cornyn (R) More focus on "Wise Latina" comment. Are you the kinda judge that veers from the Constitution. (yada yada - bloviating)
12:10 pm Sen. Whitehouse (D) Proud to be here with you today. Great attributes. Appreciate your years as prosecutor. Looking forward to hearing more. Republican words used are code words seeking particular judge with particular set of outcomes.
12:20 pm Sen Tom Coburn (R) Concerned with some of your statements. Rule of law binds us together. We want it to be predictable in fairness. Worried Constitution to be seen evolving. Your oath - follow Constitition and our laws and not be swayed by personal biases or your political preferences. Applaud your accomplishments.
12:30 pm Sen Richard Durbin (D) Wisdom comes from life not just lawbooks. Roberts said he calls balls and strikes, but hard to call fair balls and strikes when you are out in right field. Sotomayor has many outstanding accomplishments. Hard Work. Dedication.
(another outburst by some guy in a red shirt)

2:00 pm (D) Senator from MN - Kudos to Sotomayor
2:12 pm Sen Kaufman (D) Impressive Nominee. Incredible experience. Great Record. No biases.
2:19 pm Sen Arlen Specter (D) Cases
2:30 pm Sen Franken (D) Welcome. Most experienced nominee in 100 years. Outstanding jurist. Exceptional individual.
(another protester removed)
What happens Rest of Week:
. Monday close: Sotomayor given oath by Chairman Leahy and makes remarkable and moving opening statement.
. Tuesday: Hearings resume. Each Senator gets 30 minutes Q&A with Sotomayor.
. Wednesday: Hearings resume. Q&A continues. Expected to last until noon. 2nd round of Q&A begins.
. Thursday: Hearings resume. 2nd round of Q&As continue. Then they hear from outside witnesses.
NOTE: Outside Witnesses
* Democrats have put New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former Major League Baseball pitcher David Cone and former FBI Director Louis Freeh along with legal scholars and experts on their witness list.
* The Republican witness list includes conservative author and commentator Linda Chavez, a former president of the National Rifle Association and Frank Ricci, who was a plaintiff in a landmark race bias case in which Sotomayor was overruled by the U.S. Supreme Court.
* After the hearing concludes, committee members are typically given a week to submit written questions. After Sotomayor answers them, the committee will vote whether to recommend her for confirmation by the full Senate.
* Regardless of the recommendation, a Supreme Court nomination traditionally goes to the full Senate for consideration. After at least a few days of debate, the Democratic-led Senate will vote on Sotomayor.
* If confirmed by a majority of the Senate, Sotomayor will likely go straight to the White House to be sworn in, probably by Chief Justice John Roberts. If he is unavailable, another justice will do the honors.
* The court officially starts its new term in October but has scheduled a special session in September to hear a challenge to the federal campaign finance law.


Vicente Duque said...

Hyper distilled Hypocrisy :

Let's Remember the Racism and Hatred of Jeff Sessions :

With the Help of the Washington Monthly and Rachel Maddow ( video ) :

A Super Racist for the Senate Judiciary Committee, a Racist from Selma, Alabama. Dedicated to persecute Blacks and Commies.
Steve Benen from the Washington Monthly

They want him to replace Senator Arlen Specter in that Committee - As the Ranking Republican in the Senate Judiciary Committee. He says that some Whites are a shame to their Race for not persecuting Blacks. The Replacement for the Former Moderate Republican Arlen Specter.

Specter defected to the Democratic Party

Jeff Sessions addresses professional Blacks as "Boy", very offensive racist.

Lots of Racial slurs of this Racist Guy - Accusses everybody of being a "Communist"

Is there any doubt that the Republican Party is a "White Party" and the Enemy of all Minorities ?

The Republican Party is becoming more Right Wing and more Racist.

Read what Wikipedia Encyclopedia says of Senator Jeff Sesssions and his extremy right wing Activities :

Sessions had unsuccessfully prosecuted three civil rights workers (including Albert Turner, a former aide to Martin Luther King, Jr), on a case of election fraud for the 1984 election. Sessions spent hours interrogating black voters in predominantly black counties, finding 14 allegedly tampered ballots out of approximately 1.7 million ballots cast. The three civil rights workers were acquitted after four hours of jury deliberation.

Sessions was one of only nine opponents of Senator John McCain's anti-torture amendment. Sessions supports former Vice President Dick Cheney's proposal to exempt the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) from any ban on the use of torture.

Sessions has been opposed to parts of the Voting Rights Act, which he described as a "piece of intrusive legislation." In 2006 he was in favor of letting it expire, and also said that Congress should consider if it was needed in some northern cities and states.[14] He later voted in favor of extending it."

Sessions has advocated the extension of FISA legislation to legalize the Bush Administration's wiretapping techniques"

Rachel Maddow Takes On Senator Jeff Sessions & His 'Racial Issues'

Video : Republicans supporting the most Racist and Macarthist Senator Jeff Sessions - A Super Racist for the Senate Judiciary Committee

Vicente Duque

Vicente Duque said...

More Racist Statements and Bastardy of Jeff Sessions

Ranking Republican in the Senate Judiciary Committee is a BIG RACIST, old style !!

Rachel Maddow has uncovered a battery of "moral indictments" and accusations of Racism and Bastardy against Jeff Sessions.

In three Videos she shows what is Jeff Sessions, The racist and McCarthyst from Alabama, a guy with strong sympathies for the Ku Klux Klan, and insensitive to hangings of Black People in the fifties and sixties.

Rachel Maddow talks with Melissa Harris-Lacewell, Princeton University Politics Professor. About the Racism of Republicans against Sonia Sotomayor

MSNBC's Rachel Maddow Talks About Alabama Republican Senator Jeff Sessions [Racial Insensitivity Issues] With NAACP President Benjamin Todd Jealous

The Hypocrisy, Disguise, Dissimulation and Masked Patriotism of these Evil People is incredible.

See all the videos of Rachel Maddow and other hundreds of Videos and Articles about Sonia Sotomayor ( I have a big Collection of Links, a monstrous library of Truths showing the Imbecility and Racism of Sonia's detractors )

Look here :

Vicente Duque

ultima said...

"12:30 pm Sen Richard Durbin (D) Wisdom comes from life not just lawbooks. Roberts said he calls balls and strikes, but hard to call fair balls and strikes when you are out in right field. Sotomayor has many outstanding accomplishments. Hard Work. Dedication."

This is perhaps the most cogent comment of the hearings so far because it epitomizes the opposition Sotomayor faces. To paraphrase Durbin: "hard to call fair balls and strikes when you are out in left field." Is that the position Sotomayor is playing? Is she likely to continue her judicial restraint on the high court after she achieves a lifetime appointment and when her record will never again be examined to see if she lied through her teeth when she spoke of judicial restraint, statutes and the constitution.

ultima said...

I note the El Duque is still indulging in the invective he railed about because it was appearing on his sites or so he says. It's interesting what a radical he really is in his name calling -- I thought that was supposed to be taboo. He need to exercise a little judicial restraint and empathy for other persons' points of view.

Vicente Duque said...

I have been following the Sotomayor Hearings constantly, few hours on Monday and many hours on Tuesday.

I have been watching Fox News, and it is amazing !! ..... I do not dislike the panelists of Fox News !! ... I am very entertained and happy without disliking these Fox Guys.

Incredible and Unbelievable, I think that these Fox News panelists are nice to Sonia, they are not expressing prejudice, racism and hate. !!

I also think that Sonia is a Winner, answering very properly to the Republicans and to the Arrows of "Wise Latina" !!

I think that to a certain extent Sonia is bewitching the guys at Fox News, Juan Williams and others.

I dislike to the extreme that Network of Hate and Racism Fox News .... ... But these Panelist Guys are very mild, soft and tame. They are not behaving like the Mad Dogs that we see every day : Glenn Beck, Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham and other "inmates" of that Madhouse.

By the way, I have changed my hard judgements on Juan Williams because he even speaks out a different point of view against Fred Barnes and Charles Krauthammer in "Special Report"...

Juan Williams is growing and becoming more powerful as a pundit and more useful to the audience.

These Nice People at Fox will be more time in the Media than BoSeGLa : Bill, Sean, Glenn, Laura. The others will be spent in madness and anger.

Vicente Duque

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