May 26th, 2009
05:02 PM ET
13 years ago

Sotomayor SCOTUS case history: Tax deductions

WASHINGTON (CNN) – During Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor's 17 years as a federal judge, the U.S. Supreme Court has reviewed her decisions on at least eight occasions. CNN has reviewed those cases and has summarized each in a series of posts. The names and citations reflect the cases as they were known when they first came before Sotomayor.

Knight vs. Commissioner (2006), 467 F.3d 149: In 2006, Sotomayor upheld a lower tax court ruling that certain types of fees paid by a trust are only partly tax deductable. The Supreme Court upheld Sotomayor's decision but unanimously rejected the reasoning she adopted, saying that her approach "flies in the face of the statutory language." Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the opinion for the Court.

Filed under: Sonia Sotomayor • Supreme Court
soundoff (22 Responses)
  1. No More Incumbents

    What is it with Obama nominees and taxes?

    May 26, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  2. Chi Town

    Great... a moron... who the sheep will love

    It's not about's about personal feelings

    May 26, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  3. James M. Holmes

    So she was right, but the conservatives had to take a swipe at her anyway... why am I not suprised?

    May 26, 2009 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  4. Puzzled

    Why is this news? It has been common knowledge for years that this silly woman thinks she is Mother Theresa, not a judge.

    May 26, 2009 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  5. Tim

    The Supreme Court reviews only a small fraction of the cases decided by the appellate courts. Sotomayor has been on the 2nd circuit bench since 1998. In the 10 plus years on that court, she has personally written 228 decisions for the majority (not dissents). Of those 228 decisions, the Supremes reviewed 8, and overturned 6. While I have not had the opportunity to check to see in how many of these opinions the losing party sought certiorari, if you want to talk percentages, go with the real number – 6 overturned out of 228. In other words, she was only overturned about 2.7% of the time. Pretty good record in my opinion.

    May 26, 2009 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  6. J S Ragman

    Apparently the comment from "No more incumbants" is coming from someone who doesn't know how to read. There is no mention of tax problems pertaining to Ms. Sotomayor.

    May 26, 2009 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  7. Bob

    You've gotta love Robert Yoon, CNN Senior "Research" Director getting his talking points directly from the GOP......It doesn't matter that Judge Sotomayor was first nominated by G H Bush to be District Judge...Or that many republican Senators voted for her TWICE, including Orin Hatch of Utah, for her current Court of Appeals position....If it's Obama's pick, well, that just "different"...LOL!!! The GOP is in a classic "lose-lose" position here...And I'm going to enjoy every moment of it!!

    May 26, 2009 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  8. Hilary

    They still upheld it. 'Nuf said.

    May 26, 2009 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  9. Sick of Dirty Obama

    sotomayor = quota

    May 26, 2009 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  10. Alan

    Justice Roberts disagreed with Judge Sotomayor's reasoning. What a surprise . . .

    May 26, 2009 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  11. lovable liberal

    She disagreed with Roberts? Sounds qualified to me!

    May 26, 2009 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  12. tedious898

    No More Incumbents May 26th, 2009 5:21 pm ET

    What is it with Obama nominees and taxes?

    Can you read or even comprehend? If not, just turn off your mom/dad's computer. For heaven sake quit blogging because you are clueless and you would embarass a 1st grader's basic instincts.

    May 26, 2009 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  13. jrzshor

    "The Supreme Court upheld Sotomayor's decision but unanimously rejected the reasoning she adopted,"

    is that like an oxymoron?

    May 26, 2009 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  14. Bryan

    James M. Holmes May 26th, 2009 5:43 pm ET

    So she was right, but the conservatives had to take a swipe at her anyway… why am I not suprised?


    It was not just the conservatives on the bench that disagreed, it was EVERYONE. I think you may need to learn to read a bit better.

    May 26, 2009 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  15. D


    How can you try to make that argument? Yes, out of 228 decisions only 6 were overturned but that's because only 8 were reviewed. If 8 were reviewed and 6 were overturned, I think it would be better logic to assume 75% of her decisions would be overturned if reviewed. Your bias is very clear when you ignore the fact that out of the 228 decisions she made, 220 of them were never reviewed yet you give her the benefit of doubt and assume none of those would have been overturned. I don't actually believe 75% of her decisions would have been overturned but certainly more than the 2.7% you're asserting.

    May 26, 2009 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  16. Simmy

    Who asked CNN to become judge and jury for the first time, of a nominee? They've never done that before.....Why now? No doubt John King and his associates are behind it......She's going to be confirmed.....Republicans can only cremate themselves by opposing her for too long.....

    May 26, 2009 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  17. Truth-Bomb Thrower

    What an insult and a slap in the face to the American justice system nominating this racist to ANY court….much less the supreme court.

    May 26, 2009 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  18. Carl Justus

    So Roberts could not find anything wrong with the decision, but decided to slap her anyway and say her reasoning was wrong.
    I would say that Roberts reasoning was wrong for even mentioning the her reaoning.

    May 26, 2009 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  19. Seriously?

    Oh My. When the SCOTUS tell you that your reasoning "flies in the face of the statutory language", that's not good.

    ...and yet this is the intellectual star that Obama thinks is perfect to rule for the highest court in the land. Of the 8 cases reviewed by SCOTUS, 6 of them were overturned and another was right....but for the completely wrong reasons. Hmmmm.....being wrong 7 out of 8 times isn't very good, no matter how you measure it.

    Once again I just shake my head.

    May 26, 2009 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  20. catmom

    Oh people get a grip. Stop whining over every little thing. Of course President Obama could have nominated Mother Theresa and you all would be whining and complaining anyway. You all act like Republicans haven't nominated activist judges who have Republican ideology. Guess what, the American people rejected Republicans, Republican policies and Republican ideology, get over it.

    May 26, 2009 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  21. Jon

    So Chi Town, exactly how much do you know about the law?

    Look at the rest of the decisions: she tends to side with the liberals. No surprizes then that the USSC has overturned a number of her decisions, especially given that it has been at its most conservative level since the FDR administration. Of course, you're probably too young to remember the Lochner era.

    May 26, 2009 08:44 pm at 8:44 pm |
  22. God Bless America

    James, the reasoning is as important as the holding. In a different fact pattern, the wrong reasoning will lead to a wrong decision.

    May 26, 2009 09:42 pm at 9:42 pm |