Song of Sonia; Sotomayor's Nomination Should Rest on Her Record, Not Race

Article excerpt


Justice is supposed to be blind, but some Democrats want everyone to focus on Sonia Sotomayor's race and impoverished upbringing when considering her Supreme Court nomination.

New York Rep. Nydia Velazquez, chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, warned Tuesday that as Republicans look to make inroads with Latino votes, they need to be very cautious and careful in attacking the nominee.

Democrats haven't always been so sensitive. Internal 2001 Democratic Senate Judiciary staff memos to current Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin, Illinois Democrat, and Sen. Edward Kennedy, Massachusetts Democrat, used race as a justification for rejecting Miguel Estrada's nomination by President Bush to serve on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. According to the Democratic memos, Mr. Estrada was dangerous because of his minimal paper trail, he is Latino and the White House seems to be grooming him for a Supreme Court appointment.

Some of the most vocal opposition to Mr. …