June 5th, 2009
05:48 PM ET
13 years ago

Sessions would rather forget ill-fated bid for judgeship

WASHINGTON (CNN) - When greeting Judge Sonia Sotomayor this week, Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama made sure to tell her something loud enough for the assembled reporters to hear.

"You will get a fair hearing before this committee," Sessions told President Obama's Supreme Court nominee with emphatic gestures and tone.

That greeting wasn't just pleasantries. It was a promise born out of his own experience.

President Reagan nominated Sessions to be a federal judge, but the Senate Judiciary Committee rejected him 23 years ago this week.

He is now the top Republican on that panel.

"That is a very odd thing," Sessions told CNN in an interview in his Senate office. "Somebody says it gives new meaning to the word irony."

Talking about that irony brings back a flood of memories that he would rather forget.

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Filed under: Jeff Sessions • Sonia Sotomayor • Supreme Court
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