June 5th, 2009
05:36 PM ET
8 years ago

McConnell: Filibuster option was set as a precedent by the Dems

 McConnell emphasized there will be plenty of time to read over Sotomayor's other writings and opinions before the Supreme Court reconvenes in October.

McConnell emphasized there will be plenty of time to read over Sotomayor's other writings and opinions before the Supreme Court reconvenes in October.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - In a roundtable with radio reporters Friday, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell wondered if Sonia Sotomayor's backpedaling on her now famous statement about a "wise Latina woman" possibly coming to better decisions than a white male was genuine.

"If it was a bad choice of words, it was a bad choice of words repeatedly [offered].... leading one to believe that it probably wasn't just anisolated statement, but a core belief," McConnell said. Past comments by Sotomayor regarding ethnicity are being circulated by her supporters to show that Republicans didn't raise objections when she was nominated as a federal judge and then for the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

The GOP backs off some of its criticism of Sotomayor

On whether the judge's supporters would have to get 60 votes to move her nomination to the floor, McConnell did rule out a filibuster.

"The argument over whether judges should be filibustered was ended" when Democrats blocked President Bush's nomination of Miguel Estrada to an appeals court repeatedly, to the point where Estrada gave up and had his name withdrawn.

McConnell said he arged against that then. "I still think it's a bad idea; and I'm not in any way suggesting it's going to happen this time." But he called a filibuster option a "precendent that's been firmly established by the now-majority."

The GOP may not have the votes to sustain a filibuster - but could try to put up a roadblock. McConnell emphasized there will be plenty of time to read over Sotomayor's other writings and opinions before the Supreme Court reconvenes in October. But the vote on her nomination may not come before the August recess, as President Obama has said he would prefer.

Filed under: Mitch McConnell
soundoff (83 Responses)
  1. Anne

    It's comforting to me that most are not on here supporting McConnell. I believe the negativity coming from elected Republicans over EVERY little thing hasn't sat well with intelligent Republican voters.I get it that the right and left have different philosophies, but it must be exhausting to feel as if you must defend all of this nonsense. It's so unproductive to be just squaking at each other.

    June 5, 2009 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  2. Does CNN only post reich (sic) wing comments? Mine keep getting deleted!

    McConnell is just another wealthy, conservative, angry old white man who is afraid of losing his power ... looks to ME like he lost it a long time ago (eg).

    June 5, 2009 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  3. What Else Is New

    We expect the GOPers to filibuster. What else are they going to do? They are a bunch of spoiled brats and have a congressional temper tantrum sounds just like them.

    The Party of NO will not disappoint us. Only don't be surprise when they continue to have shrinking numbers of voters in 2010 and 2012. Keep it up boys, you're on a roll.

    June 5, 2009 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  4. Tony - Detroit

    I look at the comments above and I cant help but laugh at everyone who's criticizing the GOP for the hell of it, including the person who's obviously latino and doesnt mind the most unqualified latinos being in high positions as long as they're latinos, and then the comment from who seems to be a black person blaming minorities being in jail on white judge, not that most crimes originate in black neighborhoods (which are a reflection of black families not the society you're probably going to blame it on), and that's the same thinking that led 95% of black people to vote for a person just because he's black. And it's those kind of people that will bring the whole country down, people that just want to blame problems on white people, not realizing that what got the country to this point was white people, and the only thing pulling it down is immigrants who refuse to assimilate in the American system... not all immigrants but those who take advantage of the system and blame all their problems on others.

    June 5, 2009 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  5. Tatianna

    Liberal Hypocrisy – DO AS I SAY...NOT AS I DO! The courts should rule based on the law, the word law implies something solid and essentially not subject to opinion. If Sotomayor, Obama and his minions thinks the SC should rule based on public opinion then their against the constitution.

    June 5, 2009 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  6. Leah

    Term limits for all members of Congress...both Democrats and Republicans...

    June 5, 2009 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  7. jimmadison

    I really appreciate Leader McConnell's efforts.

    After having Newt Gingrich back off of his 'racist' charge and Governor Tim 'I really, really, really want to be president' Pawlenty encourage a faster track on Judge Sotomayor's hearing, I thought maybe the Republicans had abandoned their efforts to purge every woman and person of color from the Party.

    It's good to know the crazy old white guy party will be completely purified very soon.

    Thanks, Mitch.

    June 5, 2009 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  8. Ryan Wing

    They know that even if they Filibuster they really can't stop this, that's why Repubs are now changing their tune and asking all supportive.

    If there was any chance that they could stop the confirmation, they would.

    June 5, 2009 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  9. Tracy M.

    I must be dim-witted. I'm not a Latina, but I consider myself a fairly wise (old) woman. I totally concur with Judge Sotomayer, and I don't see her words as inflammatory or wrong at all. Of course she's going to see things more clearly with her background. Just like the white, middle-class women who jump up and down and scream about abortion. They've never lived the hard life, never been pregnant with their father's child, never walked in on their boyfriend shooting up in the bathroom. They have no business making policy decisions because they live in a white, sterile bubble.

    June 5, 2009 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  10. Zion

    Yep, that Hispanic and Woman vote is more important than asking real questions. If Sotomayor was black they would question her to death.

    June 5, 2009 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  11. Good/Bad

    If you look at the basics of the other comments that are similar you actually see that the entire focus on race is not what is at the heart of the statement.

    The key point in that quote survives without either race specific denomination, and it is repeated without race by her on other occasions. This is that some one who has had a broad range of experience and life would be better positioned to understand the aurguements provided and where the arguements are coming from the some one who is essentially raised in the "ivory tower." Each arguement in itself has a basis in individual experience and it is being brought forward to be tested against the law and the constitution. The ultimate decision can be based on law but it is equally important to understand where the issue is coming from and where both sides are coming from. That is also part of what each side is trying to put forward when they argue their case.

    June 5, 2009 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  12. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    This repeated statement goes to the core of her approach to being a neutral judge of the court under the rule of law for everyone. She lacks the judicial temperament required to put aside her personal "wisdom" and apply the law to the facts, which are never found by an appellate court. How about a "too radical Latina" for a High Court?

    June 5, 2009 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  13. len Smith

    Just what do the republicans do anymore. Why don't they get behind this President and help him make this country better and better. They don't seem to do anything but say NO NO NO NO and they certainly have no ideas, except reduce taxes, reduce taxes. Listen taxes are the price we pay for freedom. The roads will not be paved by charitable giving. Get with it and do something constructive. For once.

    June 5, 2009 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  14. Tatianna

    Liberal Hypocrisy – DO AS I SAY...NOT AS I DO! Was the 100th Senate the most polarized since Restruction? For better or worse, Obamas promise of bipartianship has yet to be fulfilled, as his voters demonstrate. They get more and more angry, miserable, hateful, anti-American, nasty, vile and ugly as each day passes. We will see how the 111th Congress ultimately rates, but its off to a great start to beat the 110th as the most polarized since Restruction.

    June 5, 2009 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  15. demwit

    What goes around, comes around...

    June 5, 2009 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  16. Ted Tartaglia

    McConnell is just repeating the mantra of the Grand Obstructionist Party; Say NO to anything or anyone President proposes or nominates. This bumbling old man should just fade into the sunset because he hasn't a clue as to what is going on. He is as clueless as his boss Limbaugh.

    June 5, 2009 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  17. Simmy

    Of course the hearings will be delayed......Republicans can't bring themselves to be civil.......Such a terrible example they are setting in this country and the world........Foreigners give our leader more respect than some of the citizens in his own homeland.....Think about it......And Inhofe is a monster......

    June 5, 2009 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  18. Nik without a c Kripalani

    I Live out in CA, Gay Marriage is the real issue and I suffered a loss for words. The only thing is Equality is for everyone and Ms. Sonia Sotomayor is the right choice if she should only say it once and not repeat it three times. You guys don't have any culture as is World Experience. I have visited many places and yet everyone over looks India. No wonder we bicker and rank 35 in Math, 68 in Science and Last place in Enviomental Science. So my point is this Judge will finally get a chance to tip the balance of Lady Justice and keep it fair to everyone.

    I remember when Sandra O Connor was stepping down and it was 8 years of hell for the rest of us who fought for human rights and Animal Rights and Civil Rights.

    I would like to see a ban on Guns for at least 5 years out of National Parks which is in my state of California Yosamite National Park.

    June 5, 2009 09:07 pm at 9:07 pm |
  19. ib

    The liberals know how to do nothing except bash and spew hate toward republicans and conservatives; just read these posts. My turn; liberals are so stupid they can't see the truth when it hits them in the face that's why they are always spewing hate and whining. People need to look at this persons past rulings; she should be questioned hard. Is she another far left like Obama; we should know before not afterward.

    June 5, 2009 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  20. Tom

    If the Republicans think that they will be able to institute the RFID chip implant on an unsuspecting public they're sorely mistaken.

    June 5, 2009 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |

    The MOUTH roars again.....

    June 5, 2009 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  22. Marty, FL

    Conversely, McConnell's GOP set the precedent for their ridiculous "nucular" option! Oh yeah, just change the Senate tradition for filibuster set by our forefathers when Republicans were not getting "my way or the highway." Pleaseā€¦.that's much worse, McConnell.

    June 5, 2009 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  23. RR

    Lets hope the GOP treats Sotomayor better than the dems did with Miguel Estrada!

    They torpedoed Estrade simply to prevent Bush from appointing a conservative hispanic so close to the SCOTUS

    June 5, 2009 09:33 pm at 9:33 pm |
  24. Larry

    Though it started a long time ago ...

    I would like to designate TODAY ...

    As the day that ...



    Kinda like 9/11 ... 6/5 ... REPUBLICAN INSIGNIFICANT DAY ...

    A new national HOLIDAY ...

    Soon to be a NATIONAL HOLIDAY ...

    June 5, 2009 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  25. Tom

    He looks like a stiff. Maybe its all the trips he made to Bohemian Grove with the rest of the republican rat pack. Why do these people go to Bohemian Grove, any way? Are they really that sick. Do the rituals they take part in permanently affect their brain and they end up looking like this guy after awhile?

    June 5, 2009 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
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