KQV AM 1410

KQV Editorial

The Supreme Court Nomination of Sonia Sotomayor

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     One of the responsibilities of the President of the United States is to appoint judges to the federal courts.


     A President-elect inherits a nine-member Supreme Court and those members, unless they choose to retire, serve for life.  The President has the privilege and the opportunity to nominate replacements on that court when vacancies occur.  The nominees are subject to approval by the United States Senate.


     The make-up of the Supreme Court – conservative or liberal has been a matter of contention down through the years because it is the highest court in the land and wields great power!


     The Supreme Court that President Obama inherited has been somewhat evenly divided between conservatives and liberals with a swing vote making the difference on many issues.  It has become President Obama’s opportunity to replace the Honorable David Souter, a liberal, who has announced his retirement, effective when the court recesses in August.


     It’s been reported that President Obama reviewed 40 proposed candidates for the impending nomination, starting with 40 names then reducing it to 9 – and finally 4 who made the final list.


     The nominee he has chosen is Judge Sonia Sotomayor – labeled by some to be an ideal political choice, because of gender and ethnicity.  She has a remarkable background.  She’s 54 years of age.  She was raised in the projects in the south Bronx.  From this humble background she earned degrees from Princeton University and the Yale Law School.


     Her career led her to become a prosecutor, a private attorney, a corporate litigator, a federal district judge and a New York federal appeals judge.  Her nomination is historic – the first Hispanic and the third woman who, if confirmed, would serve on the Supreme Court.


     Interestingly enough, she was nominated for a federal judgeship by then President George Bush, Senior…and to the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals by then President Bill Clinton.  Although it seems a foregone conclusion that Judge Sotomayor will win approval in the senate, considering its Democratic majority, she is not without critics.


     It is hoped that gender and ethnicity would not have a bearing on her judicial judgment and that her personal political agenda would not be more important than the law as written.


     We are encouraged that Judge Sotomayor is subject to a thorough hearing in the senate, now underway, and that she not be rubber stamped because of her political background.


     This is an extremely important lifetime appointment to the nation’s highest court and, appropriately, is being processed with that in mind.


     … Which is as it should be!



Robert W. Dickey


KQV Newsradio
July 16, 17, 18, 19, 2009                                   

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