From satirist Scott Ott, Sotomayor: Wise Latina Would Not Have Picked Me
Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor said today that “if President Obama were a wise Latina woman, with the richness of her experiences, he would have picked a less controversial court nominee.”
Judge Sotomayor said she doesn’t blame the president for his unwise choice, “after all, as a black male, he can’t be expected to demonstrate much more wisdom than he has so far. He’s certainly sharper than a white male, but the fact remains that he’s male, and has no discernible Latino heritage.”
Although the president and his spokesman have both indicated that the judge misspoke on an occasion in 2001 when she said, “I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life…”, further research shows that the remark was frequently included in her speeches between 1994 and 2003.
President Obama said he would not comment further on the controversy, “since matching wits with a Latina woman is above my pay grade.”
Moving from satire to reality, Judge Sotomayor’s expression of gender and ethnic superiority in that 2001 speech was not a misstatement or taken out of context. It was just one of many reiterations of her personal philosophy. Sotomayor Repeatedly Referenced ‘Wise Woman’ in Speeches
Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor delivered multiple speeches between 1994 and 2003 in which she suggested “a wise Latina woman” or “wise woman” judge might “reach a better conclusion” than a male judge.
Those speeches, released Thursday as part of Sotomayor’s responses to the Senate Judiciary Committee’s questionnaire…suggest her widely quoted 2001 speech in which she indicated a “wise Latina” judge might make a better decision was far from a single isolated instance.
You can see PDFs of her responses to the Judiciary Committee at the link.
If you’re thinking that her personal viewpoints shouldn’t be among the criteria used to judge her, you can blame the President for declaring empathy as a necessary qualification for appointment to the Supreme Court. He got this ball rolling.