June 4th, 2009
11:54 AM ET
9 years ago

Poll: Americans back Sotomayor by 2 to 1 margin

(CNN) - A new national poll suggests that by a margin of greater than two to one, Americans approve of President Barack Obama's nomination of Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Fifty-five percent of those questioned in a Quinnipiac University survey released Thursday say they support the Sotomayor nomination, with one in four opposed and one in five not sure. The poll was conducted over a seven-day period starting on May 26, the day Obama announced his high court nomination, and appears to be the largest survey conducted so far on the subject.

The poll indicates that Democrats overwhelmingly approve the nomination, independents favor it 53 percent to 26 percent, and Republicans oppose it 47 percent to 30 percent.

"Since her nomination nine days ago, her level of support with the American people has been constant," Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said in a statement. "This is an indication that criticism from some conservatives and Republicans has not struck a chord with voters - at least not yet."

The survey suggests Americans are split when it comes to Sotomayor's legal qualifications vs. the federal appeals court judge's views. Forty-six percent of those questioned say senators should only consider Sotomayor's legal qualifications in deciding whether to confirm her, with 44 percent saying senators should consider her views on such issues as affirmative action and abortion.

There's a partisan split on this question, with a majority of Democrats responding that only Sotomayor's qualifications should be considered in the confirmation process, and a majority of Republicans questioned in the poll saying that the judge's views on issues should be considered.
If confirmed by the Senate, Sotomayor would become the first Hispanic or Latino justice on the Supreme Court. The poll indicates that one-third of Americans say that was a very important factor in the president's nomination of Sotomayor, with one in three say it was somewhat important. One in ten feels it was not too important and 17 percent say it was not important at all.

A majority of those questioned say Sotomayor's legal qualifications for the job are more important than making the Supreme Court look like the rest of the nation in terms of race, religion, ethnicity and gender. Only 8 percent indicated that legal qualifications are less important, with three in ten saying they are equally important.

Sxity-two percent of Americans approve of the U.S Supreme Court, the highest approval ever measured in a Quinnipiac survey.

The Quinnipiac University poll was conducted May 26-June 1, with 3,097 registered voters nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 1.8 percentage points.

Filed under: CNN poll
soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. florida indep

    Conservatives got down on their knees when Scalia, Thomas, Roberts and Ialito were proposed and confirmed for the court. Liberals are in charge now and are hoping she will be an answer to the conservatives. As an Independent, I hope she will use wisdom instead of idiotology in making decisions that will effect us all. Noone is perfect and I haven't seen anything that I consider worthy enough to disqualify her nomination yet. I will keep an open mind unlike the extremes on the right and left.

    June 4, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  2. Dan, TX

    I no longer have any sympathy for pro-life groups. They support murder. Hypocrites.

    June 4, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  3. Former Dem

    I don't care if she is purple, green or orange. My main problem with her is some of her views, she is for gun control, which being an avid hunter I find unacceptable, she might not be a racist, but some of her rulings point that way and she was picked by obama which is scariest of all.

    June 4, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  4. Done Deal

    That's all she wrote.

    June 4, 2009 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  5. Judgement Day = General Election 2012

    She's in, because America wants her on the Supreme Court, and a VERY POPULAR PRESIDENT does as well. Deal with it.

    June 4, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  6. sensible Cape Coral FL

    No one expects the Republicans to support Sotomayor's nomination(after all they have a reputation to protect) but to object to her because of the pronunciation of her name or her liking of Spanish food, is really dumb even for them. Scrapping the bottom of the barrell, perhaps?

    June 4, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  7. elliott

    Well....this American doesn't...

    June 4, 2009 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  8. Allen

    Not! My question is this racist mexican, even legal in this country?

    June 4, 2009 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
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