July 10th, 2009
04:00 PM ET

Can New Haven firefighters derail Sotomayor's Supreme Court nomination?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

There's an old saying: "Payback's a bitch." Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor ruled against a promotion test for firefighters in New Haven, Connecticut because not enough minorities scored well enough to qualify. Last week the Supreme Court overturned that decision and now it's the firefighters' turn.

Republicans plan to call two of the firefighters who didn't get promoted to testify during Sotomayor's confirmation hearings next week. The white one who originally claimed reverse discrimination, and the lone Puerto Rican one who joined the lawsuit and incidentally scored very well on the test.

This will make equal opportunity the focus of, at least, part of the confirmation hearings and will no doubt serve as a source of some embarrassment to the nominee. The hope is to establish that appellate judges may be influenced by personal and political views such as a belief in racial preferences for minorities.

The GOP also has 12 other witnesses on their list. It should be standing room only.

Democrats are planning to call 15 witnesses, many of them Republicans, in hopes of defending critics and convincing the 19 member judiciary committee that Sotomayor is a mainstream judge worthy of becoming the first Hispanic and third woman to be seated on the high court.

Here’s my question to you: Can firefighters from New Haven, Connecticut, derail Sonia Sotomayor's Supreme Court nomination?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Ryan from Redmond, Washington writes:
I hope so, Jack. A racist is a racist, no matter what the color of her skin.

Rick from Medina, Ohio writes:
The genius of our Founding Fathers really comes through on this issue. There is a reason the Supreme Court consists of nine Justices. No one judge possesses the wisdom to be correct every time. Four justices agreed with Ms. Sotomayor on this case, five did not, and the process performed as envisioned 233 years ago. Judge Sotomayor should be confirmed based on the totality of her record. I do not believe this circus the GOP has planned for her will be decisive.

Pal from Chicago, Illinois writes:
The broader question is how we implement affirmative action. Those New Haven, Connecticut fire fighters topped the exam and should have been given the promotion. We should be a colorblind society that prides itself in the values of hard work.

Jane from Minnesota writes:
I don't think so. You would think by listening to the Republican right that she acted alone in judging this appeal. I'm pretty sure that other current Justices sitting on the High Court have had decisions overturned also.

Mike from Syracuse, New York writes:
Let's hope so. Anyone who can't see that minorities had the same opportunity to score well shouldn't be on the Court. It's called equal opportunity, not equal capability.

James from Anaheim, California writes:
I honestly believe they (the New Haven firefighters) can and they can do it without saying a word.

Filed under: Sonia Sotomayor • Supreme Court
soundoff (181 Responses)
  1. John in Virginia

    Let's hope so – Sotomayor is a mediocre judge at best. What happened to picking the best and brightest for the nation's highest court?

    July 10, 2009 at 12:54 pm |
  2. Melissa

    It won't matter one bit. Frankly, there's been alot more important things to worry about recently.

    July 10, 2009 at 12:57 pm |
  3. JD in NH

    Not unless they're legal scholars. I'm sure Judge Sotomayor will elaborate on her legal reasoning in that particular case. Having the firefighters appear is a Grand No Party publicity stunt.

    July 10, 2009 at 12:58 pm |
  4. David Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    I sure hope so Jack.I was huge fan of her's until her vote was revealed
    on the firefightes.Throwing out the tests because someone didn't pass................I mean good heavens what are we thinking............I think now she would be so far left it would be off the chart.

    July 10, 2009 at 12:59 pm |
  5. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    No.......they can raise a bit of a ruckus, but she was not the only judge involved in that ruling. She has enough support to secure the position, and there's not much the opposition to her can do about it. The Republicans need to tread lightly here unless they want to lose what support they have from the Hispanic community. and from women too for that matter.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  6. Drake in Shongaloo,LA

    I don't believe so. She in my opinion made a good decision. If you look to the past, every lawmaker has made a choice that someone has called a "mistake".

    July 10, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  7. John from Alabama

    Jack: I do not believe the New Haven Case will derail Judge Sotomayor's nomination to the Supreme Court. This is only one case and I think there should be a careful review of all her work while on the bench. I am sure her nomination will be approved by atleast 60 to 70 members of the US Senate. The Republicans will try to derail her, but I think she has the right stuff.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:15 pm |
  8. Bizz, Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    If Clarence Thomas can get elected to the Supreme Court then Sotomayor should not have a problem. This is a woman who has an outstanding resume to be elected to the Supreme Court. I cannot see how one decision she made that was overturned by a 5 to 4 vote can keep her off the bench. I think we need more people of her character on the bench not less. If the democrats can not get president Obama
    nominee elected to the Supreme Court, then it means a black eye for party leaders.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:31 pm |
  9. Justin

    No. Good lord. One district judge, three appellate judges, and four Supreme Court judges found the city could throw out the test results. That's eight federal judges. Only five found the city couldn't, and what's more, they had to adopt an entirely new standard to justify their decision. The rule, now, is that a city can't just say they took remedial action to avoid being sued, they have to be able to show their belief is that they will be sued and lose, and that their belief is supported by "a strong basis in evidence." In other words – Sotomayor and the seven federal judges who agreed with her followed the law. The five "conservative" judges on the Supreme Court made new law.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:31 pm |
  10. John Webster, Aldergrove BC Canada

    I think that this is a red herring that won’t really stop but may delay confirmation here. Sotomayor is a good choice and will start to balance the court but you know the Republicans. They would find problems with their own mothers on that bench.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  11. Jeff Virginia

    I would hope so, but don't count on it. I really believe it shows her bias,
    but they will still confirm her. If discrimination is wrong, then it has to go both ways.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  12. Richard, Syracuse, NY

    NO. The fact is this ruling was consistant with the written law. That has been backed up by multiple sources. It is in fact the Supreme Court who does not have to justify their rulings with Case Law.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:34 pm |
  13. Rosemary

    I hope Not. I think too much emphasis was put on a case when it is obvious something was wrong with this whole affair, and all the mass media and pundits want to do is break it down to reverse discrimination.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:36 pm |
  14. Allan Hanson Placerville,Ca

    NO. She was not the only one who voted against them. It was a stupid decision. but not even a judge is going to be right every time If every one of the members of Congress were to be examined they would come out far worse. It is only politics as usuali anyway, it has nothing to do with qualifications.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:44 pm |
  15. Frank from Peterborough

    Not really since what Sotomayor and the other judges ruled on was the case law while the supreme court handed down a decision along party lines.

    It just gives the obstructionists something to bellyache about and make good fodder for the 24 hour cable news outlets.

    July 10, 2009 at 1:47 pm |
  16. Doug - Dallas, TX

    If they can then there's a serious problem with our confirmation process. This has turned into a political fight with the Republicans trying to assert some kind of power. They do not care what is best for the country, they just want to win and it doesn't make any difference to them who they destroy in the process.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:04 pm |
  17. Denny from Tacoma, WA

    Because Anita Hill could not derail Clarence Thomas' nomination, I serious doubt the firefighters will derail Sotomayor's chances of becoming an Associate Supreme Court Justice.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:09 pm |
  18. Adam Thousand Oaks, CA

    It should be a wake-up call for those who take their jobs seriously. She has a less than stellar record when it comes to having her opinions reviewed by the Supreme Court. However, since this is all about politics and catering to the growing hispanic community rather than finding the best justice, I am sure she will be confirmed. No problem.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:12 pm |
  19. Remo....Beautiful downtown Pflugerville Texas

    Yes I believe it can. It's about time we promoted the best instead of the best in this or that race. Everyone has a brain, everyone can learn. Let's promote knowledge, that's a novel concept isn't it!

    July 10, 2009 at 2:18 pm |
  20. Peg from NY

    They have a very legitimate reason to question her. I am very liberal and was none too happy when I found this out. Hard to say if it will "derail" her totally but I do hope it keeps her in check.

    Generally speaking I endorse her~I would like MORE info now that this has come to light. Sonya has some explaining to do.

    She is far more palatable than Clarence Thomas!

    July 10, 2009 at 2:27 pm |
  21. Alex in Seattle

    Probably not, Jack, although there will be much sound and fury to distract us from her solid record. In the New Haven case, she followed the law in her unpopular ruling. It was the activist Roberts court that overruled her. Of course the GOP doesn't mind activist judges when they rule in their favor.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:33 pm |
  22. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    Jack, this is earth and America where people get their way and the democrats will win this one and especially since she is a woman and a hispanic. Besides, look at the math, dems 60 seats and those other people 40 and she only needs 51. Also, look at the Supreme Courts ruling of 5 to 4 split along political party lines. Welcome to EARTH.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:38 pm |
  23. Mike of Hot Springs.

    No way will that case derail her nomination. She was clearly wrong but there is enough support out there for her to win. I think that these old geezers on the court are the last bastion of common sense about race in the country. They may be wrong on virtually everything else but they understand that the nation has gone overboard trying to assist persons who are not qualified for the job. It is not race because the persons giving the exam were clearly a racially balanced group.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:40 pm |
  24. steve in florida

    Hopefully not. She made a measured and rational decison and there's no one on the Supreme Court that hasn't had several decisions overturned. The woman is as qualified if not more than any other siiting member. This is just another GOP dog and pony show. And we all know what you have to clean up after one of those.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:41 pm |
  25. Rod - Allentown PA

    We can only pray they can Jack

    July 10, 2009 at 2:47 pm |
  26. Paul from Northern Virginia

    Probably not. But, it may bring public mud-slinging back to the Senate Judiciary Committee, where they have frequently acted indignantly squeeky clean, while dishing dirt behind the scenes. In Obama's pursuit of "more openness", should be a good show of what he and the democrat leadership really mean.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  27. Terri


    I’m certain Sotomayer knows by now that she can’t please everyone. To try is not only futile, but also frustrating. If there’s anyone out there that thinks they can do it, step forward and run for office.

    Other members of the Court have been confronted with disagreements so why should Sotomayer be held to a different standard? This is how our justice system works.

    San Luis Obispo, CA

    July 10, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  28. Jenna

    Can firefighters from New Haven, Connecticut, derail Sonia Sotomayor’s Supreme Court nomination?

    Why would it derail her? She didn't and the other two judges refused to hear the case and defered the decision to the lower courts.

    The same folks that are bad mouthing her today are the same folks that approved her during her last two confirmation hearings.

    All of this is blubbering is just for show..

    Roseville CA

    July 10, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  29. Rick Medina,OH


    The genius of our Founding Fathers really comes through on this issue. There is a reason the Supreme Court consists of nine Justices ... no one judge possesses the wisdom to be correct every time. Four justices agreed with Ms. Sotomayor on this case ... five did not ... and the process performed as envisioned 233 years ago.

    Judge Sotomayor should be confirmed based on the totality of her record. I do not believe this circus the GOP has planned for her will be decisive. She will win or lose her seat based on her wisdom, demeanor, and track-record accumulated over many years.

    Rick, Medina, OH

    July 10, 2009 at 2:51 pm |
  30. Amber - Austin, TX

    No. No one is perfect, and not every judgement rendered can be perfect. Hence, more than one Justice on the Supreme Court. I have every confidence that her Honor will be confirmed.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  31. Tony frtom Torrington

    One can only hope, but it seems it's only Democrats who pull the inquisition on Republican nominees. If you doubt me look up Alito and Roberts. Republicans seem to have higher standards and consider the person's abilities rather than ideology. Too bad, because I think Sotomayor will be biased in all her decisions, as she ruled against firefighters in New Haven, Connecticut.

    July 10, 2009 at 2:55 pm |
  32. EugeneWiese Midlothian,Va.

    The firefighters in New Haven should quit while they are ahead.This whole issue is a big distraction and the bad guys love it,and that includes the media. Patience and cooperation could go a long way to peace and prosperity.These firefighters and the unions are overlly zealous. They remind me of neocons,Liberterians, so called Independents,conservatives and Republicans. Cool it and let the proper Senate committee decide who shall be seated on the Supreme Court. Gene

    July 10, 2009 at 2:57 pm |
  33. DM - San Diego

    Republicans defending the "common working man " ? What's happened, have I missed something ? No... that's not possible. They can't derail her nomination either.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:03 pm |
  34. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    I sure hope so. We don’t need another biased supreme clown on the court. Discrimination is supposed to be illegal. Apparently this judge seems to think so too – as long as it isn’t reverse discrimination – then it’s OK.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  35. Jennifer - Winnipeg

    Oh, for Heaven's sake! Is that the worst thing the GOP can come up with ... trying to scuttle her chances because she wanted to give minorities a chance?? The GOP are frantically grasping at straws now. Someone should muzzle those losers.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  36. John in Santa Barbara

    If the Democrats can bring in minority firefighters who didn't pass the test but can prove that they are better qualified otherwise than those who did pass, we have a tie, and tie goes to the runner.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  37. Denise

    No. One decision does not derail a persom from sitting on SCOTUS.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  38. andyz Lynn, MA

    Let those without sin cast the first aspersion.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  39. Susan from Twin Falls Idaho

    Anything is possible. What a judge should be is knowledgeable, fair and trustworthy. What happened with Anita Hill and Clarence Thomas didn't seem to matter. So, is the glass ceiling still firmly in place with the goose and the gander getting mixed results?

    July 10, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  40. Jeffrey Cohen from LA, California

    They could certainly try, but they wont succeed. Yes, Sotomayor is going to have her fair share of critics within the GOP, but I think she is worthy of becoming a supreme court judge and they need to just confirm her!

    July 10, 2009 at 3:11 pm |
  41. vern-anaheim,ca

    no jack,this is a desperate measure by republicans to derail the conformation of judge sotomayor and it won't work.judge sotomayor followed the law in the new haven ct case and ruled fairly.judge sotomayor will be confirmed no matter what the republicans do

    July 10, 2009 at 3:11 pm |
  42. Pal McGill (Chicago IL)

    Hey Jack,

    The Broader question is how we implement Affirmative action. Those New Haven Con. fire fighters top the exam and should have given the promotion. We should be color-blind society that prides themselves in the values of hardwork.

    Pal Chicago

    July 10, 2009 at 3:17 pm |
  43. Gretchen from Denver

    No, most people know the facts about judges records on decisions.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:18 pm |

    She should be o.k. If Clarence Thomas was seated, than she should be, for sure. The 5-4 Court now is so one sided and the GOP think that is all right.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:19 pm |
  45. Ray in Nashville


    The issue itself is an old one, the case was pending when she was nominated. I don't think there are any surprises here.

    More to the point, despite the fact that Republicans are calling the Puerto Rican firefighter as a witness, they still will be under the scrutiny of the Latino community as they as Judge Sotomayor their questions. I don't think they are going to press too hard. There are also a lot of independent women voters who will be keeping an eye on the way she is treated by a party that is still dominated by white men.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  46. Mike - Boca Raton, Florida

    I hope so. Her major qualification seems to be that she is Hispanic. Whoop dee doo. So is my wife but that doesn't qualify her for anything without the proper credentials.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  47. Arlene


    I certainly hope not. We are talking about one ruling. My guess is if that's the standard they plan to hold the Judge to, than that will become the standard for all future Supreme Court Judges. One other thing, if that had been the standard for previous appointments, my guess we would be a very Judges short...

    Arlene in Atlanta

    July 10, 2009 at 3:25 pm |
  48. Joe in MO

    Only if politics plays a greater role in the Senate's choice than qualifications.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:28 pm |
  49. GREGORY Miami Beach, Fl.

    The fact that 1 minority did well on the test doesn't automatically disqualify an argument for discrimination and It 's no surprise that a center right court overturned her either. But since this case doesn't involve a major issue there really not much that can stopp Miss Sotomayor of becoming our next Supreme Court Justice.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  50. Pugas-AZ

    Let's hope so. We as a country need to move beyond this lowering of standards just to please everyone. Why is it that certain groups of move up the economic ladder without special allowances while other groups hold on to past grievences that stifle their progress? The cream always rises to the top -if you leave it alone.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  51. Jane (Minnesota)

    I don't think so. You would think by listening to the Republican right that she acted alone in judging this appeal. I'm pretty sure that other current Justices sitting on the High Court have had decisions overturned also. This partisian crap needs to stop. Can't we leave the personal beliefs at the door & do what's good for America a a whole?

    July 10, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  52. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Let's hope so. Anyone who can't see that minorities had the same opportunity to score well shouldn't be on the Court. It's called equal opportunity, not equal capability.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  53. james in anaheim california

    I honestly believe they (new haven firefighters) can and they can do it without saying a word.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:39 pm |
  54. Paul Austin, Texas

    No Jack I do not think such a small group will be able to derail her nomination. However all facts must be looked at prior to her nomination and only the facts. It is far to many times that accusations and inneundoes are seen as fact. In a case like New Haven, Connecticut are we hearing all the details. Did or does New Haven have a normal number of minority firefighters per percentage of the population of New Haven? With a derailment of her nomination could in itself be seen as personal racial fears by the judiciary committee that is why when all the true facts are in she will be nominated.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:40 pm |
  55. Simon/Orlando

    I'm sure they can't derail her nomination, but they can sure make the point that being white should not be a barrier to career advancement.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:40 pm |
  56. Phil, georgia

    Just when you think that Republicans can "Go no Lower", they even surprise themselves at what they can do. They really know that Sotomayor is in the mainstream of thinking about this law, and 3 other judges agreed with her.
    This is nothing but a spectacle,, sadly at the expense of hispanics and the first latino supreme judge. They are willing to desecrate this hearing for political gain, to unnescessarily stir up racial tension on a false premise of racism. Republicans need to Repent and take the Evilness out of their hearts.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:41 pm |
  57. Donald in CA

    Why should they be able to. I agree with her decision. In case anyone missed it the supreme court decision was 5/4 conservative.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:44 pm |
  58. JIM S

    Not a chance. The Democrats has a majority in both the House and Senate. I believe she should not be confirmed.. She will wind up being confirmed.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:47 pm |
  59. Anne -- Sulphur, LA

    On the lower court she was only one of a unanimous panel that ruled based on established case law. If this case derails the nomination we haven't made as much progress as we think.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:47 pm |
  60. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    No, if they can then we need to throw out Roberts and Alito

    July 10, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  61. Chryssa

    Wealthy white men have shown preference for other wealthy white men for generations, and that didn't stop anyone from being nominated.

    While I don't agree with Sotomayor's decision on the firefighter's test, I would hope those making this decision know better than to base it solely on the latest headline.

    Boise, ID

    July 10, 2009 at 3:53 pm |
  62. Chris, Bx. NY

    Not a chance Jack.......The case was compelling. The way Sotomayor ruled was consistent w/ the history of judgements made in cases of this nature on the local state level.......she basically followed precedents of other case decisions of this matter.....The Supreme Court has opened up in a sense, a new law of the land, and a new precedent for lower courts to review and enact in cases to come.
    This will not derail Sotomayor.

    July 10, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  63. Gigi

    No! The power of government is complex as well as powerful.


    July 10, 2009 at 4:02 pm |
  64. Allen in Hartwell GA

    Jack, unless someone can prove unfair bias or misuse of her office due to lack of qualifications, I don't think the firefighters will stop her nomination.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:03 pm |
  65. Jack

    No. There will be no derailment that is not what this hearing is about. What it is about is selecting a qualified candidate for the SCOTUS. If Sotomayor is that person she will become the next justice on the court. If it is found that she is not qualified or that she should be disqualified because something is discovered that would disqualify her I would rather them find out about it now before she is given a life time appointment.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:04 pm |
  66. Nancy, Tennessee

    Sotomayor may have fueled a fire by ruling against the New Haven firefighters that they are not willing to douse yet. Now Sotomayor will have to pass a test. She could see how it feels to get passed over for a promotion even though she scores high on the test.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  67. Peter M

    Let them dream on. These Firemen are being used as props for Repugs and will only end up looking like vindictive losers.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:08 pm |
  68. seeksense

    The particulars of Sotomayors decision on the firefighters case have already been pondered by the senate committee.
    Everyone knows about the case and have their opinions regarding it.
    Even with the firefighters testimony one decision in a huge portfolio will not cause the derailment of an extremely qualified judge/candidate.
    Palm Bay, FL

    July 10, 2009 at 4:09 pm |
  69. jack Carlson

    This Judges decisions have been reversed a majority of the time – at best she is a District Court Judge, and average at that.
    Jack C

    July 10, 2009 at 4:09 pm |
  70. Linda in Bisbee, AZ

    Nah. The Supreme Court decision was 5 to 4. Sotomayor is not out of the mainstream. They'll get nowhere with that.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:09 pm |
  71. Doris/St Louis

    No, she followed the rules of law.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  72. Gordon, Plano, Teaxs

    Lord, I hope it is derailed. This country doesn't need someone like her on the highest court in the land.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  73. Jay in Texas

    No, I don't think the firefighters' testimony will have much of an impact on Sotomayor's confirmation. The Congress pays no attention to what millions of American voters want so what makes anyone think they will pay more attention to a few firefighters?
    Brownwood, Texas

    July 10, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  74. Chris

    No. The firefighters cannot derail Sotomayor's appointment because 4 of the 9 justices agreed with her, including the justice she is replacing.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  75. Tony from Omaha, NE

    I think the GOP will attempt to use this to tarnish Judge Sotomayor, and it will certainly rile up those who are already against her. But I find it ironic that they are attacking her for upholding the law as it's written in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. Are they suggesting that she ignore that law and "legislate from the bench?" Isn't that "judicial activism?" I thought the GOP was against that practice.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  76. Annie, Atlanta

    No. As you stated, she also ruled against the lone Puerto Rican. How can a Puerto Rican ruling against a Puerto Rican be considered racial preference? The Republicans, however, will throw their tantrums as usual. Nothing new here.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  77. Michael, Alexandria, VA

    No. They could potentially embarrass themselves more than the Justice-nominee. She followed precident – they can't come down on her too hard for that. If the Republicans want to look like a regional, racist party, they can go right ahead.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  78. Daniel

    Whatever happens, happens but if Ms. Sotomayor becomes a Supreme Court Justice she won't be the first Hispanic. His name was Benjamin Cordozo!

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  79. Ryan

    No and it shouldn't. I am a caucasian firefighter/paramedic and was appauled by the ruling of the Supreme Court. I think they got it all wrong. But for this one ruling to be the basis for whether or not she serves on the highest court is absolutely absurd.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  80. Jon Gill,philadelphia

    The Republicans sure hope so. This nothing more than a smear campaign. I didn't agree with her decision on the New Haven firefighters but it shouldn't disqualify her for the job.
    Every nominee for the court has flaws and had made some bad decisions. This is nothing more than the Republicans trying to make Obama look bad. It may come back to haunt them as Hispanics are a large group of voters.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  81. Ryan W, Indianapolis

    It is the lower court's responsibility to use the upper court's decisions as precedent, which Sotomayor did faithfully. In this case it was the supreme court who went against modern precedent with their ruling.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  82. Jim Blevins

    No, the problem really is that Bush stacked the Supreme Court with bigots. This was a 5-4 decision which would almost certainly have gone the other way before Bush did his damage to the Supreme Court. In fact, this confirms that Sotomayor is exactly the sort of person that needs to be on the Supreme Court.

    Jim, Craig, CO

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  83. Alexander

    The case shows Judge Sotomayor is a terrible light. The decision was faulty and ruined lives. Can't wait for the hearings to start

    July 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm |
  84. Ruby Coria LA., CA.

    Hi Jack, nothing is going to prevent her from being seated, the GOP have both feet stuck in so much poop they can't even move left or right, their stuck. She will make it in smelling like rose's.
    By the way why is that Gov. Mark, still in office? He was suppose to be fire 2 weeks ago!

    July 10, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  85. scott- michigan

    no, its just one ruling. Thats why there are 9 Justices

    July 10, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  86. Daniel in New York, NY

    Whatever happens, happens but if Ms. Sotomayor becomes a Supreme Court Justice she won’t be the first Hispanic. His name was Benjamin Cordozo!

    July 10, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  87. Andrew

    One word, no. Reverse discrimination is a lie. It's a way to excuse racism against minorities that is still alive and well. She will be confirmed and when it happens it will be another historic day.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  88. Keith Henry

    Regardless of the outcome, the firefighters had their case adjudicated all the way to the Supreme Court. Sotomayor was just one small part of a large, intricate process. No judge is on the winning side of every single decision during an entire career.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  89. Jym

    The constitution needs to be held up for the law's sake. A supreme court justice needs to be impartial to gender, race, creed, nationality, and sexual orientation. She really needs to show us that she's not out with a minority agenda. If she ends up twisting the law just to get her way, that's just the sort of thing that's going to make our constitution HANG BY A THREAD!!!

    July 10, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  90. Phyllis

    No, don't think so Jack. This woman definitely should be confirmed.

    Catonsville, Md

    July 10, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  91. Craig from Princeton NJ

    Judge Sonia has made close to 400 rulings and out of those a mere 6 has gone up to the Supreme Court for review. And only 4 of those 6 were reversed, always by very close vote. The Firemen can complain but its clear that a great many of these cases could have gone either way – on a swing or only one or two votes. Judge Sonia seems more than fair, all of the time.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  92. Clarence

    I believe that this issue will have little effect on the Judge's nomination. Seeing that it was a 5-4 decision, falling on typical political affiliations, there is no evidence to undermine her judicial abilities. Secondly she was given the highest ratings possible by the ABA, so the only thing that could interfere from her nomination would be conservative political will, but seeing it is in short supply, her selection seems nearly inevitable,

    July 10, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  93. Rick (Shenandoah Valley WV)

    I wonder how she would have voted had they all been black?
    Yes it can be used to derail her nomination. It's obviuos she plays the race card.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  94. Jordan T.

    The New Haven Firefighters will not derail the confirmation hearings of Sonia Sotomayor, all judges make controversal decisions and this happens to be one of them, and, she should not be judged solely on this decision, The Judicary Committee should look at Sotomayors extensive record and brilliant career!

    Jordan, Atlanta

    July 10, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  95. Jack Pace

    The Connecticut fire fighters have about as much chance to derail Sotomayer's nomination as "Joe the Plumber" did in helping the GOP hang on to the Whitehouse, and the Obama machine rolls on.
    Jack Pace
    Corpus Christi,Texas

    July 10, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  96. Karla

    No, they won't derail her. In a free country they can and did complain and they won. If Clarence Thomas can rule, Sonia is a shoe in.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  97. Dennis, Columbus, Ohio

    Very doubtful because the Supreme Court “made law” from the bench. She followed the guideline set forth by earlier decisions and the Justices were divided with a 5-4 decision.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  98. Patrick

    There are so many that think Obama is the second coming or some kind of superhero so she will probably get through on that alone.

    I hope they televise the proceedings because it would be good to hear the man she ruled against giving testimony on how he felt he was treated. Especially after he ultimately won in the Supreme Court. This is the last chance to cast any doubt on her because once she is confirmed she will be untouchacble.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  99. Lance Denney in Ca

    She OPTED for the LAW "as it was written". That was her job on that case! The Supreme Court's job was to "determine" if the 'LAW' was CONSTITUTIONAL! They determined it wasn't..by a TINY '1' vote. This court has been PROVEN to 'BE' POLITICAL!

    She didn't do ANYTHING wrong. Things worked EXACTLY how they are supposed to. Nothing was political.

    What a breath of fresh air, in fact......

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  100. Donna

    No Jack, I dont think the two firefighters can derail her because there is lot more people that are with her. The thing I sometimes get so disappointed with this country because everthing is about race. had she been caucasian we would not be discussing this. She is the right person for the job, and the GOP needs to get over it. I hope when its election time they can wait for the latin community to support them

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  101. David Guzman

    Absolutely not is my answer to your question. The defendants for New Haven need move on with their successful legal challenge. These guys need to realize that not every city in this nation is New Haven. Every city has a right to do what they want when it come to hiring or firing of public employees as long as they safeguard against discrimination, which is exactly what New Haven's govt. was doing. These guys are looking like big fool and giving every other diverse city an eye-opening window to look make a greater effort to diversify and not the opposite. Lastly, move on guys and enjoy your short lived "victory".

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  102. Jack Sanders

    With all due respect to our firefighters, Jack, their appearance at the Sotomayor hearings will do about as much to derail her nomination as the appearnance of a plumber did to derail Obama's election.

    Jack Sanders
    Sarasota, FL

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  103. Susan Frost

    The Supreme Court's recent 5-4 reversal of Judge Sotomayor's decision in the "New Haven" case is itself a departure from over 30 years of judicial precedent in this area, constitutes a serious setback to civil rights,and shows the dangers of a right-wing activist Court. No, it will not derail her appointment, but it should make us hope that more of the far right faction on the present Court will retire while we have a Democrat in office, lest we have no constitution left.

    Tuscaloosa AL

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  104. Andrew Bloomington IN

    One word, no. Reverse discrimination is a way of excusing racisim against minorites that is still alive and well. She she is confirmed it will be a historic day.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  105. Bob G in AZ

    Jack, it would be a sad day if that would play out. Since when did it become a personal decision? Everything I have heard on it she voted in her group in lock step with the law.We are still a country of laws right. It is funny how the Republicans can find fault in both of her raised issues. 1. Her earlier comments about her ruling as a hispanic women with expierience and then 2. Her lower courts decision to follow the law. It is just one hypocrisy after another. It just makes you sick. If truth be known I would think that if the President did not think she would make a good choice the Republicans would be in favor of her. Zig -Zag

    July 10, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  106. Angela Martinez

    If Supreme Court justices could be judged by one decision,
    then Justice Scalia should have been removed for what he
    did to the USA, and the world for that matter,
    by helping George W Bush become President.

    Therefore, Ms. Sotomayor, should not be judged by one decision –
    namely the firefighters test in Connecticut.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  107. Rico Gonzalez

    NEXT!!! If it was that easy to derail a supreme court nominee, then it would be impossible to find judges for the supreme court...

    July 10, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  108. Qaim Wynter

    No, it can't derail her confirmation. Monday, infront of the Senate judiciary committee will sit one of the most qualified nominees in decades, and a tiny blip on her record that pertains to the New Haven case will not have any big effect on the process

    July 10, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  109. John

    Interesting question...The Justice she is repalcing was part of the minority and agreed with her majority decesion in the lower court. The Supreme Court split the case 5-4, with the conservative Justice's overturning the majority decesion of teh lower court. The GOP wants to set her up as racist and igniores taht the lower court provided a majority decesion; in reality she is just as mainstream as the current Justices on the court, balanced and very qualified. And most importantly, not a conservative activist!

    July 10, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  110. ruth lucy

    first we had to put up with joe the plumber now its fred the fireman or whatever – boy, the repubs are really desperate

    July 10, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  111. marilyn sisk

    I am a WASP woman and what I feel is unpopular.
    All this business about the white firefighters............does it occur to anyone that this is a opportunity for them to see how it feels to experience discrimination? What a fuss..........minorities have experienced this for decades.................

    Poor babies................................

    July 10, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  112. Ed Brancheau

    Can this firefighter case derail her confirmation? Absolutely!

    Should it derail her confirmation? Absolutely not!

    There is not one Supreme Court Justice now or in the entire history of the country that hasn't been overruled at one time or another. That's the whole point of the appeal process: to correct previous injustices.

    Furthermore, a couple of weeks ago, Scalia was the lone dissenting vote in the case about the teenager that was strip searched. Had he been one of the earlier appellate judges, he would have been overturned.

    It would be unfair to label him for one decision just as it is unfair to label Sotomayor.

    Now, if we discover in the coming weeks that she's had more instances of this then maybe her critics have something to complain about.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  113. Karen in Phoenix

    I think it's worth noting that the term "reverse discrimination" is irrelevent. Discrimination is defined by Webster's dictionary as, "to make a difference in treatment on a basis other than individual merit." Those firefighters were discriminated against - they were not promoted based on something other than their individual merit. Sotomayor condoned that discrimination. I believe it's important for diversity to be represented in our nation's highest court, but I believe it should be represented by people who do not discriminate against minorities OR the majority.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  114. Joe in VA

    It will probably not derail the nomination but I hope it will. It's clear that years of affirmative action has established a view by many that minorities should get preferential treatment because of "past transgressions" by the evil white majority – whether or not the minorities are equally qualified. This is the case even after about 60 years of affirmative action programs and an Afro-American president and is a widely help liberal view. I actually had a minority EEO officer at my federal agency tell a friend of mine that "you people ( meaning white people) owe me and my sister an education. " Discrimination in all forms is wrong and the supreme court has said it cuts both ways. It's a shame the nominee apparently does not see things that way.

    Chatham, VA

    July 10, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  115. Akin Ojehomon

    I seriously doubt that Sotomayor could be derailed by the New Haven firefighters. Her decision was based on the information provided. Name one Judge who can honestly say that their personal opinions in conjunction with the law have not influenced many of their decisions. She was not alone in her decision, and should have no bearing on her confirmation.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  116. James Allen

    The white firefighters will not derail Judge Sotomayor's nomination because Democrats will point out that her ruling in that case was consistent with precedent and it was the Supreme Court that "changed the rules". But Senator Jeff Sessions, the ranking Republican who was rejected for a Federal Judgeship for his racist sentiments, will attempt to inject race in the debate.

    James Allen
    Euless, TX

    July 10, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  117. tristan

    I say this as a 23 old white male, looking to apply to law school this upcoming fall. I achieved a very good score on my LSAT, i spent hours studying, and earned my score. This score, coupled with my academic record and letters of recommendation should be the only -and i mean only.- factors considered by any person reviewing my application at any school I apply too. Involving my cultural heritage in anyway is opening the door wide for discrimination, plain and simple. i feel this comments relevance to the fire fighter issue is pretty obvious.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  118. Linda in AL

    I doubt that the firefighters could derail Sotomayor unless she chokes in explaining the reasoning for that ruling. The Republicans say they want a nominee to use reasoning based on law to make decision and that is what she did. Bringing a non-legal mind in to emotionally testify is a waste of time. I want to hear Sotomayor's legal reasoning abilities vs. some emotionally based testimony.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  119. katrina elliott

    I hope not, I don't agree with the way Sotomayor ruled, and I,m an African American. It show's a desperation on the GOP's part, As for the firemen, how can they allow themselfs to be used this way.

    Queens, New York

    July 10, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  120. Matt from Chicago

    No way, no how. Unless Jeff Sessions and the Republicans want to be known as the men who refused to seat the first Latina Supreme Court justice, this will just be a speed bump on the road to history.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  121. sandy

    I sure hope she is derailed. We have so many wonderful, honorable judges in this Country. Why can't we have a nominee with integrity who will not make law.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  122. Joan

    I don't think so Jack . It's unfortunate but it's in the bag for the woman who let her ethnic background cloud her judgment, and not for the first time. It was a terrible injustice against the men who studied for the test passed , and were denied due to being the wrong color. Supreme Court Judges are selected to look at the case without bias,she failed that test.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  123. Deborah Alfano

    I hope the firefighters clarify the potential problems of a judge using "empathy" instead of using sound law to make decisions. She is no doubt a nice and very intelligent woman. She is however, not yet ready to sit on the Supreme Court if she has not learned that freedom is really about treating everyone "equally". Equal not Special, because of color or education or any other reason. To be free brings with it great responsibility to work and earn your way in life and it does not mean getting special treatment. I am glad the present Supreme Court understands this basic fact which seems to avoid Sotomayor.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  124. Jason, Koloa, HI

    There is no way that she does not get nominated. This is a feeble attempt to portray her as a racist and it will most likely blow up in the faces of the republicans dumb enough to try and attack her. It is hard to accuse her of being a racist in this decision without looking like a white supremacist.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  125. Lacey

    Well Jack, maybe the Democrats can call the thousands of men of color, who (throughout the years), were denied entry into a fire department – even after passing the test. These firefighters know better. They are using this to grand stand. Some politicians are behind this. Why are qualified people given such a hard time? Can we ever progress in this country?

    July 10, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  126. Jon

    In a word: no. One case cannot define an entire career.

    Like Sotomayor, Justice Samuel Alito also served on the Court of Appeals. Two of Alito’s Appellate Court rulings were reviewed by the Supreme Court, and both were overturned. Remind me again how many Republican senators said this disqualified Alito from serving on the high court?

    July 10, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  127. Esther massillon ohio

    no way
    the day that we all have to have the same opinion about all things our constitution will be dead and america will have meet the same fate as Rome.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  128. mohamed Adow, clarkston GA

    The only thing that may derail her confirmation will be exhibition lack of "freedom from prejudice" with Congress and the American people.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  129. Mike Moseley

    Jack, wasn't there even a split decision in the Supreme Court amongst the judges...? No I don't think this will effect her nomination being successful.

    mike in VA

    July 10, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  130. Elaine A


    Derailing Sotomayor shouldn't be done on a note of vengence, but because she is not qualified. She has been called 'well qualified' recently, that should be the deciding factor. I understand the firefighters feelings, however, I hope they aren't out for revenge... she would be the first Hispanic, derailing her for revenge would be nothing more than hypocrisy.


    July 10, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  131. Woody Lewis

    Didn't she uphold a ruling from a lower court?

    I don't think a half dozen people can derail her appointment, but I personally think it was a mistake.

    Most people seem to think she's very well qualified–nobody pleases everybody all the time–and should be seated. I concur.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  132. Tamara, Daly City, CA

    The New Haven Firefighters can derail Judge Sotomayor's nomination to the Supreme Court because her decision in their case confirms a frequently iterated antagonism toward white men in her extra-judicial speeches. Her combative statements about white judges suggest that she has emotional issues related to her ethnicity and gender that cloud her ability to judge cases involving white men dispassionately. A single decision or statement is one thing, but a pattern of decisions and statements is quite another.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  133. Len Myers

    Yes, the Supreme Court overturned her decision, but as I recall
    their vote was 5 to 4. That's hardly a strong disagreement to her
    ruling. 4/9 ths of the court affirmed her decision.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  134. mike

    thats why they're their, Jack. But I hope their experience doesn't weigh on her confirmation. As I understand it, the appeals process does not scrutinize the outcome of a trial, only that it was conducted in a fair, legal manner. So how can she be held responsible for a decision reached in a trial she was not origonally a part of ? Go figure-

    July 10, 2009 at 4:27 pm |
  135. Bill

    no, this is just another bit of low class, dog whistle theatrics on the part of the Party of No. It will have no relevance on her confirmation hearings (anyone with the slightest bit of intellectual honesty would admit that her ruling re: Ricci was simply an impartial application of the law as written and the exact opposite of the dreaded 'judicial activism). Rather, this is just one more pathetic attempt by the GOP to play to the base and play to people's emotions by intentionally misrepresenting the facts of the case to make it appear she herself favored denying equal opportunity to those white firefighters. It's quite telling that those that would brand her as a racist or as anti white consistently fail to address or even acknowledge her dissent in Pappas v Giuliani, a case which puts the lie to all the meanspirited smears about racial bias...

    July 10, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  136. David Barrett, Lawrence Kansas

    I find it ironic that in order to Sotomayor to ascend to the highest judicial office in the land she must first face a roomful of old, white men. Even though the right-wing constantly cries reverse rascism, things at the top still look strikingly familiar to earlier American history.

    The proof is in the pudding so as soon as I start seeing minorities at the top I will start believing that there is a level playing field.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  137. Katiec Pekin, IL

    She was taking the only option available. Do not think prejudice was involved in any way. We do not know all the intricate details, laws etc involved.
    The republicans will use anything and everything they can to destroy whatever is not of their making. How sad the level politicians have resorted to. They are making a sham of our once honorable political system.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  138. Grady

    The only difference between Sotomayor's opinion on race issues vs some non-minority lawmakers, justices, and Clarence Thomas is that she is openly honest with this subject with where as the other group smile in your face and stab you in the back behind closed doors.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  139. Karl from SF, CA

    All this is going to do is show the Republicans up as the partisan dimwits they are. She ruled in accordance with the existing precedent. Had she done anything else she would have making law from the bench. Case closed.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  140. AJ, Potsdam, NY

    No, Jack.

    The New Haven Firefighters are appearing at the beck and call of the nasty – and supremely boorish – Republicans. Whether they act like gentlemen, or perform like trained seals for their hosts is up to them.

    The fact is that more judges in Ricci v. DeStefano have sided with the City of New Haven than the plaintiffs, and the SCOTUS decision in fact overturned the intent of Congress – and gutted the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Oh yes, it was also a 5-4 decision.

    Judge Sotomayor's next job title will be Madam Justice, and I welcome her to the Court in advance.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  141. Dwayne C. Friese

    Jack, I hope the firefighters from New Haven, knock Sotomayer clear out of the ball game. Her decision was pure racist, and a complete idiot would have known better.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  142. Doug

    Are nominees now being evaluated based on the testimony of litigants who appeared before Judge Sotomayor? The Dems should see the GOP’s unhappy firefighters and raise 20 happy litigants. Good strategy in poker but ludicrous in confirming a justice of the Supreme Court.

    Fort Lee, NJ

    July 10, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  143. John from Alaska

    Not a chance, Jack. Sotomayor ruled correctly according to existing law. In overturning the decision the Supreme Court made new law. In this case, the Supreme Court Justices in the majority are the 'activist judges'.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  144. David Tiffany

    The dispute in the court below was a factual dispute and the dissent makes a compelling argument that the new evidence standard established by the Supreme Court should be remanded to the lower court and the city ought to have the opportunity to produce evidence that addressed the new standard.

    So no, the fact that Judge Sotomayer did not guess what the new evidence standard would be is not relevant to the discussion of her qualifications. In fact, had her panel suggested this new standard she could have been accused of being an activist judge. Funny how this Supreme Court dodges that bullet.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  145. Betty from Texas

    Judge Sotomayor was one of a panel of three judges who decided this case. If we are to be fair, what is the ethnicity of the other two judges on the panel? And how about the four Supreme Court Justices who upheld her decision? This is a witch hunt coordinated by the GOP to try to derail President Obama at every opportunity. The five "Supremes" wrote new law on this case and it should not be the basis for denying Judge Sotomayor's confirmation. I don't hear the right wing making their usual noise about activist judges when the activists judges rule in their favor.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  146. Han G Thesobs in Ca

    Her "Less-Than-Stellar" record is THE MOST STELLAR we've seen in recent history and better than ANY on gthe court we now have! You better look it up folks! Remember- now that Obama has 60 Dems- He COULD nominate a MORE LIBERAL justice like Bush did!

    Don't believe the LIES propagated by the smokescreening Religious Right. She's made MORE decisions with FEWER appeals or reversals than MOST all the PRESENT judges on the Court! Roberts was a KID , in judge years, when he was nominated. She voted WITH the conservatives 94% of the time! Hellooooo? They are LYING to you!

    July 10, 2009 at 4:32 pm |
  147. Hussein Columbus, Oh

    No Jack the fire fighters testimonies will not hamper Judge Sonia Sotomayor chances of ending up Supreme Court. It will however hurt the fire fighters in the court of public opnion. My prediction is they will go from sympathetic figures to political figure heads. in other words Frank Ricci aka "Frankie the fire fighter" meet "Joe the Plumber"!!!!

    July 10, 2009 at 4:32 pm |
  148. Leo, Dallas, TX

    The republicans will not achieve anything by presenting the firefighters at Sotomayor's confirmation hearings. All you have to do is count the number of democratic senators to know this is simply a futile academic exercise.

    If the republicans become too nasty in the confirmation hearings, they stand the risk of further alienating hispanics in future elections to their detriment. My advice to republicans: don't start a battle you are certain to lose.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:33 pm |
  149. Richard

    It should have, but it won't; she will be confirmed even though she's not qualified.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:33 pm |
  150. Ken in NC

    They will try and they will fail. Republicans will do anything to have it their way. They will even wreck the train with themselves on it to make it slow or stop. What they fail to understand is that the train they are riding is a mirror image of the real McCoy.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:33 pm |
  151. Raoul New Orleans, La

    No, they cannot. The court did not try to inhibit the promotions of the white firefighters, they tried to protect the opportunity of the minority firefighters to seek the same promotion. The twisting of this is in the worst traditions of propaganda, and will have negative consequences. When a group of white male Senators attack a latina woman, for protecting the rights of Americans, it can only look bad. Enjoy the tunnel to China, Republican Party!

    July 10, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  152. katrina elliott

    No way Jack, as an African American I totally disagreed with Sotomayors ruling, but that doesn't mean she should not be appointed. The GOP are just using these firemen

    July 10, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  153. JB

    Sotomayor upheld the policy regarding employment discrimination that was in place at the time. Conservatives should be thrilled that she didn't choose to be an "activist judge".
    She has more broad based experience than any other recent nominee include Robert, Scalia and Thomas.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:34 pm |
  154. R J Koser

    I doubt this will have any effect at all, except to help a Republican sideshow. She was not, I repeat not the only judge to rule in this case. This was a decision of the circuit in which she concurred. What a firefighter knows about judicial qualifications (unless also a lawyer) is beyond me. I wish the Republicans as well as some Democrats would start taking care of the nation's business and stop posturing for re-election and certain constituencies.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  155. katrina elliott

    No way Jack, as an African American I totally disagreed with Sotomayors ruling, but that doesn't mean she should not be appointed. The GOP are just using these firemen

    Queens, New York

    July 10, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  156. Brendan in Phoenix

    The Senate Judiciary Committee is not going to vote her down on the basis that she was wrong on one single case. If that was true, we wouldn't have a Supreme Court right now. No, the only way her nomination gets derailed is if she derails it herself. No one outside of the proceedings is going to cause enough of a ruckus to stop her from getting through.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  157. Steve Canada

    No...I think its political theater and nothing more..I'm willing to wager that many present and past SCJ's have had rulings overturned in their careers. Its the Republicans just doing their "anything Obama stands for is CRAP" act...

    July 10, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  158. DawnL,CA

    E Gads! These firefighters are probably all union members. The old GOP are turning in their graves. Dem's look out! What are the GOP doing in your stomping-grounds?
    Sotomayor was wrong,period. I believe she was using affirmative action in her ruling against the firefighters. Has she used AA in her admission to top schools?
    She will be confirmed. If Thomas was confirmed, anyone can be confirmed (except Bork.)

    July 10, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  159. Mike, New Orleans

    One court opinion won't hurt Sotomayer. But the Limbaugh Party could make it a contentious confirmation.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  160. John


    The Circuit Court did not follow the letter of the law in that decision. The discision involved interpreting Title VII. Congress did not want practices that resulted in the exclusion of minorities but they did not want judges rulings to result in further descrimination. The Second Circuit's decision did result in descimination based on the race of those who passed. Such an opinion may be allowed for a politician but not a justice.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:45 pm |
  161. Tim

    It is possible. This is just showing Sotomayor's political views getting in the way. In order to be an effective judge, she needs to put these things aside and look towards the constitution for help–something she takes for granted by playing the race card, but something that she also doesn't seem to be following.

    July 10, 2009 at 4:47 pm |
  162. kishen c.rao

    I don't think so...seemingly she is a good lady...

    July 10, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  163. Lynn, Columbia, Mo..

    Nope. This is all so silly and the taxpayers are paying for this comedy of errors

    July 10, 2009 at 4:56 pm |
  164. Patrick

    I think the position should go to the best candidate and race color should not be a factor..

    I do question her mind set in some of her off bench statments. If a white man said he hoped he could make better decisions than a latina woman, I wonder how well he wold be seen as qualified for the highest bench?

    July 10, 2009 at 4:58 pm |
  165. Ed'sKate

    I would hope not. She voted according to what the law read at the time. What the Supreme Court did was CHANGE the law. Perhaps some of these dissenting folks should read up on history as it was not that long ago that Nominees for the Supreme Court did NOT even have to have confirmation hearings. How about that, maybe we should go back to that way of doing things.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:00 pm |
  166. candice

    i don't think so, but they'll probably do it anyways. I think all of this is just huge mess.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  167. Dee in sunny Florida

    That was one decision. I think that Congress will (I hope) look at Ms. Sotomayor's entire judicial record and make a decision based on the entire scope of her decisions, not just one.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  168. John Rademacher

    A resounding no. With 17 years as a federal judge and a total of 27 years judicial experience, her numerous rulings have been know for
    their preparation and fairness. Like many federal judges some of her rulings were reversed. Although Ricci was reversed, Judge Sotomayor affirmed the federal district court judge decision, was joined by the other two Second Circuit judges (making it a unanimous panel), and was supported by four of the nine Supreme Court Justices. Therefore, 11 of the 21 federal judges that ruled on Ricci ruled as she did. If two firefighters can derail her nomination then the Supreme Court Justice selection and confirmation process will have been derailed.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  169. Lou

    Let's hope they cannot derail her confirmation. She has been determined by the American Bar Association as "Well Qualified" which is their highest rating. She voted to enforce existing law, not write new law which the Supreme Court did. What happened to the Republicans who are against making new law from the bench? She is better qualified than other members of the Supreme Court. Stop the circus and get on with the peoples business.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  170. dave

    I hope not . if that's the case what happens to the other judges that sided with her. And it was a 5 to 4 decision even at the Supreme court.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  171. Jim in Alabama

    Well, I suppose the case could indicate to some that she is racially biased and thereby show her lack of objectivity in filling the supreme court vacancy. However, this remains to be seen and if the Republicans continue to trash her, it could alienate millions of hispanic voters in the U.S. come next election.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:35 pm |
  172. SHARON: Anchorage, Alaska

    No. The Firefighter case will not derail Sotomayor approval. She is almost a shoe in, due to Democratic control at this point. Republicans have to show that they are willing to put up a fight in any case, voice their opinion and support constiuents concerns.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  173. PeteyWheatstraw

    In my opinion, Sotomayor's comment about Latina women vs. White men on decisions should have ruled her out!!!! Citizens are kicked out of juries due to the fact that they are biased. Why should the judge remain on the case if she is biased? What is this world coming to? Minorities are now majorities, let's add up the numbers and quit giving people free rides. Get with it people.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:48 pm |
  174. Davon

    No they can't. Once again the GOP are making themselves seem like a both of uptight white males scare a qualified minority. All her peers call overqualified fair, and an ethnical judges. Because she sided against the white firefighters she racist. It's stupid, baseless, desperate, and show you really voting Republican.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:49 pm |
  175. Jim


    Not a chance.

    Reno, Nevada

    July 10, 2009 at 5:50 pm |
  176. Bruce

    I think they should derail it with all possible speed. That ruling of hers scares the crap out of me. She proved beyond a doubt that she is rabidly anti-white, and should be de-throned ASAP.

    July 10, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  177. K

    I hope so. Listening to my gut feeling i do not trust her. This is not based on gender or race–just something about her and my gut feelings have yet to prove me wrong.

    July 10, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  178. Davon

    To me Jack, it shows more about these firefighters than about Judge Sotomayor.

    She sided with the City of New Haven not against the with white firefighter. I guess the other for supreme court judges who sided with her are racist also?

    July 10, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  179. JIM S

    There is no chance she will not be confirmed. The Democrats have control of the House and Senate. The fact is she is a racist and will be biased.

    July 10, 2009 at 6:26 pm |
  180. NANCY M.- Colorado

    "The GOP has their witnesses." Need we say more? When will they stop trying to undermine our President? We all know the answer to that.

    July 10, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  181. Michael McDowell from Ft. Hood Texas

    If the hypocritical Republicans want to make themselves look more stupid then they need to continue on their path of hypocrisy. According to bar polls Sotomayor voted with Republican judges 97% of the time. So how they want to isolate one appellate ruling out of 9 justices voting is about the dumbest thing they could do. But who can remember when the GOP has demonstrated any intelligence or common sense this decade??

    July 10, 2009 at 6:45 pm |