Sotomayor Confirmation Hearings Begin



By Dolores M. Bernal, NEWS JUNKIE POST

Sonia Sotomayor will be on the hot seat today as she faces questions from Senate Judiciary Committee members during her confirmation hearing to become the 111th Supreme Court Justice to serve in the United States.

Confirmation hearings are expected to last at least a week, but could end as soon as Wednesday. She will testify about her life experiences and her record on the job as a U.S. Court of Appeals Circuit judge. If confirmed, Sotomayor will replace Judge David Sutter who is retiring from the bench.

Patrick Leahy, one of the most liberal Democrats in the Senate, leads the Judiciary Committee, but also Alabama Senator Senator Jeff Sessions will have a strong presence at the hearings. Sessions, one of the most conservative members of the Senate, will likely set the tone for the Republican party at the historic hearing.

Soon after her nomination, Sotomayor was accused by some Republicans for being a “racists” due to a remark she made in 2001 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.”

President Obama has stood by Sotomayor and defended her from allegations that she is a “racist,” and has instead tried to shift focus to her accomplished career.

“Over a distinguished career that spans three decades, Judge Sotomayor has worked at almost every level of our judicial system, providing her with a depth of experience and a breadth of perspective that will be invaluable as a Supreme Court justice,” Obama said back in May. “Walking in the door she would bring more experience on the bench, and more varied experience on the bench, than anyone currently serving on the United States Supreme Court had when they were appointed.”

Sotomayor, who injured her foot last month, will likely have her leg elevated at the hearings.

You can watch the live webcast of the hearings, here.

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