May 29th, 2009
12:58 PM ET
13 years ago

Poll: Majority approve of Sotomayor nomination

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="According to a new poll, 54 percent of Americans approve of Sonia Sotomayor as President Obama's Supreme Court nominee."]WASHINGTON (CNN) - A new national poll indicates that a majority of Americans approve of President Barack Obama's nomination of Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court.

Fifty-four percent of those questioned in a Quinnipiac University survey released Friday approve of Obama's choice, 24 percent disapprove and 22 percent are undecided.

In a Gallup poll conducted in the hours after Tuesday's nomination announcement, 47 percent of those questioned said they rated Sotomayor as an excellent or good choice for the high court, with one in three respondents saying she is a fair or poor nominee. One in five had no opinion.

The Quinnipiac University survey suggests that Democrats overwhelmingly back the Sotomayor nomination, and that Republicans oppose it by a 46 percent to 26 percent margin.

The poll also indicates that nearly six out of 10 women back the pick, with 18 percent of the women questioned opposed. Forty-eight percent of men questioned say they approve of the Sotomayor nomination, with 31 pecent opposed.

If confirmed by the Senate, Sotomayor would become the nation's first Hispanic Supreme Court justice. A third of those polled say that's very important, 36 percent feel it's somewhat important and one in four say it's not very important.

But by a much larger margin, those questioned do suggest that Sotomayor's background was a major factor in her nomination.

"Seven in 10 think that Judge Sotomayor's Hispanic heritage played a big role in President Obama's decision to nominate her," Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said in a statement.

As for the pending confirmation process: 47 percent of those questioned say senators should consider only Sotomayor's legal qualification in deciding whether to support her nomination, while 43 percent say senators should consider her views on such issues as abortion and affirmative action.

The Quinnipiac University poll was conducted May 26-28, with 1,438 registered voters nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 2.6 percentage points.

Filed under: Sonia Sotomayor • Supreme Court
soundoff (147 Responses)
  1. Dawn

    I meant gender and/or race..... Oops

    May 29, 2009 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  2. Bud Burgoon-Clark

    I wish the ditto-head conspiracy theorists would come up with something besides George Souros and ACORN ... that's SO last year (eg).

    PRESIDENT Obama made a FINE choice in Judge Sotomayor; she WILL be confirmed; LIVE with it.

    If we're LUCKY, the President will get to replace a couple of the Reich (sic) Wing Opus Dei Roman Catholic judges as well.

    May 29, 2009 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  3. Quin

    I believe Sonia Sotomayor is highly qualified, I don't see why people are upset over it.

    May 29, 2009 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  4. please

    Scott the Independent May 29th, 2009 3:43 pm ET

    Just the fact that the GOP has started calling her names and out of her name is enough to nominate the women. Had the GOP been in full support then I'd be worried. But, from all I've read she is fair and balance – unlike others that utilize the phrase

    Scott – I couldn't agree more. It's kinda funny, but the more the GOP whines about something, the more I believe it is the correct choice

    May 29, 2009 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  5. Ted

    I don't care what republicans think of Sotomayor. Please remember that Bush brought us Sam Alito – what a neocon disaster. I am hoping that Sotomayor will make it so that we can bring true intellectualism to the court.

    May 29, 2009 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  6. Steve (the real one)

    Most of you supporters only support her because you were told to do so! You know little to nothing of her history or her legal opinions. Do a little research for yourselves will ya?? The same applies to those who oppose! Somebody please thoughtfully tell me why you support or oppose! Think for yourselves America! its not too late!

    May 29, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  7. mary

    Steve, (the real one) You probbaly don't look that good yourself.

    May 29, 2009 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  8. Lori

    @Elliot: 54% is just above half……the same people that put Obama in office….no surprise here. Which means that just under HALF disapprove of her……No huge story here. Pretty much divided across party lines. America is more divided than it has even been. There is a wider gap between Repubs and Dems. It's about their world view. Their philosophy. They are fast becoming polar opposites…
    No, Elliot. Your numbers are off. 1 in 5 have no opinion. It means that some are still undecided. The Republicans only comprise of 21% of the American population- gone are the John McCain days of 46% Republican support. Sorry. Sotomayor will be confirmed and the Republicans are on their way to extinction with their anti-Hispanic fews that are finally coming to the forefront. I'm glad that they are realizing how much the GOP doesn't like them, I just wish more had realized this in 2000 and 2004 when some voted for the idiot Bush TWICE!!!

    May 29, 2009 05:26 pm at 5:26 pm |
  9. zalgo

    hah! A majority of college students like her... well good for them.

    From their own page:

    "Quinnipiac University, founded in 1929, is a private, co-educational, non-sectarian institution"

    ANYTIME someone says "non-sectarian" it means Democrat and the Dems will simply drink whatever flavor koolaid in front of them so long as Obama is serving it up.

    I discount this survey 110%

    May 29, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  10. Professor

    Sotomayor is a very intelligent woman, and I do not believe that she is a racist. However, if she favors abortion rights, then I do not think that she should be confirmed as a Supreme Court Justice. We need justices who will fear GOD and make righteous legal decisions. I pray that the LORD will have mercy on Sotomayor's soul and save her from her sins.

    May 29, 2009 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  11. T Mckinley

    I think we all need to just get it over with and surrender to the Mujahadeen as soon as possible.

    And lets stop thinking for ourselves too, I hate freedom.

    May 29, 2009 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  12. Steve J, Michigan

    Does it matter what Rush, Newt, or Rove say about anything... The fact that They are taking her opinions out of context to argue against her is reason enough to support her....Look what we have now on the court (Scalia and his puppy Thomas).. At least she'll have her own opinion...


    May 29, 2009 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  13. Sniffit

    @ Big Bear, who said "I would bet that no one in the Connecticut area were asked about her, nor did they question any white firemen in New Haven."

    Ha. If you think 99% of the people in America aren't aware of the quotes the GOP took out of context and has been shoving up everyone's bungholes in the papers, on the intertoobz and on the nightly "news"...then you're sadly mistaken. Almost everyone has heard the GOP's arguments here and has chosen to disregard them because they are complete and utter disingenuous fluff. Now, if they decide to come out with something more substantive than the current smear campaign, you let us know...mmmmkay?

    May 29, 2009 05:37 pm at 5:37 pm |
  14. Brian in VA

    She wasn't picked because of ethnicity and gender, SHE WAS PICKED DESPITE IT! Get a clue people.

    May 29, 2009 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  15. Sniffit

    @ Jim , who said "Hey CNN, polling before vetting…just like Obama huh??"

    I'd be careful there. Your precious RNC said they were going to be "fair" and use the "wait and see" approach and yet, somehow, those statements from Mushmouth were immediately followed by (a) accidental early release of a talking points memo to the press, which read like a fill-in-the-name-here argument outline for why everyone should be afraid and angry about Obama's pick and (b) a media blitz from every GOPer hoping to win the GOP's nomination in 2012, all slandering her mercilessly. You want to talk about people not waiting for the hearings and until appropriate vetting has taken place? Glass houses "my friend," glass houses.

    May 29, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  16. Joan

    It seems to me that there are a lot of Americans who have a brain and thankfully some common sense.

    The GOP are showing themselves to be the most "obstructive and idiosyncratic party" that that I have ever heard.

    They certainly need to get rid of Limbaugh and Cheney along with a lot of other "dim wits" If this is all they have to offer the American public I would suggest that they disperse ; become educated and study the ethics of how to speak to and about people of every race and creed.

    They are the dim wits of the country.

    May 29, 2009 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  17. Victory (Vic)

    Rush Limpball and the rest of the racist Rethugs should shut their big pie hole and wait and see what the hispanic woman has to say about her comments. My wife and sisters tell me constantly that they are smarter and better judging people than men are. And when I here comments like racist and bigot coming from jerk off, hypocritical men like LImpball. I have to agree with them.

    May 29, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  18. Seattle Girl

    "Republicans oppose Sotomayor by a 46 percent to 26 percent margin." ~ Truly shocking that the party of mostly rich, old white men oppose this HIGHLY qualified Hispanic judge's appointment. Further marginalizing the GOP. Way to support diversity you idiots!!!!

    May 29, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  19. LeoMartinez

    Mr rush Lim///////////////bo,Harry Potter(gingrish ) and Patt please is time for you guys to GO AWAY.

    May 29, 2009 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  20. Ambrose Smith, Borrego Springs, California

    Okay folks! Get ready for people to start crying, "What? Nobody asked me? I never got polled! What a fraud poll! blah blah blah!"

    Makes me laugh.

    May 29, 2009 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  21. Alex

    How much deeper into a hole is the Republican Party going to dig itself? Suddenly we have two idiots like Rush and now Newt sounding like a bunch of good 'ole RACISTS themselves. These two characters still haven't figured out they are driving honesty and truthfulness into the ground. Keep talking boys. You are assuring the Democrats of a long and safe tenure in the White House. Soon many remaining Republicans who still believe in the core values of the party won't even bother voting simply because they are smart enough to understand they won't have many, if any victories at the polls.

    May 29, 2009 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  22. skyhawkdriver

    Am I going out on a guessing that the poll was taken at harvard university??..and who really gives a rats rear end anyways??

    May 29, 2009 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
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