June 10th, 2009
10:14 PM ET
13 years ago

Republicans write letter to Sotomayor, ask for more information

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/06/10/art.sotomayor0610.gi.jpg caption="Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee have written a letter to Supreme Court nominee Judge Sonia Sotomayor."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - As time ticks down to July 13 - the recently announced date for the start of Judge Sonia Sotomayor's confirmation hearings - Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee are asking Sotomayor for more information about her lengthy legal career that includes almost two decades on the federal bench.

A letter to Sotomayor signed by every Republican on the committee and dated Wednesday states that committee staff "have noted a number of apparent omissions" in the materials Sotomayor recently submitted.

"In addition, we believe that some of your responses are incomplete," the letter also says. The seven Republican senators ask Sotomayor to "revisit the questionnaire and provide another supplement as soon as possible." Alternatively, "[i]f you believe that your questionnaire is fully responsive, we would appreciate an explanation to that effect," the Republicans tell Sotomayor.

Read: The Republicans' letter to Sotomayor

Among other things, the letter asks Sotomayor to provide copies of materials she edited while at Yale Law School, to explain why an all-female organization that she belongs to does not violate the federal courts' Code of Judicial Conduct, and to provide more information about nearly 200 speeches, remarks, or lectures she has given.

The letter comes on the same day Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell took to the floor of the chamber to criticize Senate Democrats for setting the start of Sotomayor's confirmation hearings in just over a month from now.

"They want the shortest confirmation timeline in recent memory for someone with the longest record in recent memory," McConnell said. "This violates basic standards of fairness and it prevents senators from carrying out one of their most solemn duties, a thorough review of the president's nominee to a lifetime position on the highest court in the land."

Filed under: Extra • Sonia Sotomayor • Supreme Court
soundoff (117 Responses)
  1. Mike n LA

    Come on McConnell just say it. "We Republicans don't want a spic on the court".... guess what.. this time you won't have a say!!
    My only regret is she is not replacing Scalia or Thomas

    June 11, 2009 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  2. Sari

    The GOP is merely stalling the inevitable. There is just over 3 1/2 years left of Obama's first term (I'm hoping a second will follow). He gets to pick the nominee no matter how you go about it. Get over it already.

    June 11, 2009 12:47 am at 12:47 am |
  3. Ken

    Typical Republican hypocrisy. What else can I say?

    June 11, 2009 12:49 am at 12:49 am |
  4. David S. Robins

    Now the Republicans are trying to paint Judge Sotomayor as another Harriet Myers, the utterly incompetent White House lawyer who GWBush nominated for the court and who submitted an insultingly incomplete resume and response to the Senate Judiciary Committee. This effort is truly an exercise in desperation, reminding us all again just how despicable the remaining Republicans in Congress really are. Well, we'll clean them all out in 2010 and 2012.

    June 11, 2009 12:50 am at 12:50 am |
  5. Omari - Phx

    Does anything ever get done in D.C? all that ever happens is Republicans and Dems bickering and complaining. Jeez, approve her and get going on real issues

    June 11, 2009 12:52 am at 12:52 am |
  6. tjaman

    It's interesting they didn't ask her to perhaps conduct her own hearing while she was at it. She submitted the materials she submitted. These are grown adults with complete staffs perfectly capable of supplementing the THREE-HUNDRED PAGE QUESTIONNAIRE with whatever original research they care to. Honestly.

    June 11, 2009 12:55 am at 12:55 am |
  7. George Guadiane Austerlitz, NY

    Ask her 4,000,000,000 inappropriate, inconsequential, misleading, "when did you stop beating your mother" questions in the hopes that you can trip her up, get her to "tell a lie" and MAYBE then you can TRY to make fact of your deceptions and STILL come out looking like JERKS

    Busy work??? Is that the best you have?


    June 11, 2009 12:57 am at 12:57 am |
  8. Eric

    The title is yet another example of CNN's totally slanted reporting. Read the headline "Republicans Issue Demand to Sotomayor," then read the letter. Is anything "demanding"? The letter is a textbook example of respectful questioning. Don't take my word for it; read the letter. But CNN figures you won't - you'll just read the headline and be influenced by it or you'll already have an opinion formed before you read the article.

    Look, I'm a conservative, but not a lock step conservative. There's plenty to challenge or even laugh at the Republican Party for because of its actions now and over the past few years. But you should at least try to be a little bit fair, at least a little bit, in your reporting.

    June 11, 2009 12:57 am at 12:57 am |
  9. DM

    Having the longest record is a reason in favor of a shorter confirmation, not against it. Someone with little background to go on needs more investigation. The party that gave us Clarence Thomas has _no_ credibility in calling this, "one of their most solemn duties."

    June 11, 2009 12:58 am at 12:58 am |
  10. Mia

    "They want the shortest confirmation timeline in recent memory for someone with the longest record in recent memory," McConnell said. "
    McConnell probably does not realize that he basically disproved the GOP argument that Sotomayor was picked based on her gender and race and not her experience. They just want more time to splice little tidbits so they can blow out of context every last decision she has ever made. What are they expecting, Obama to nominate a conservative judge? Maybe the GOP should win an election before they start making demands.

    June 11, 2009 01:01 am at 1:01 am |
  11. Tracy-Oakley

    The reason the Republican's need more time is because Sotomayor has too much experience. What a bunch of morons! Maybe if they did more work and less complaining they could review her cases of the last 9 years (the last time she was up for confirmation) and bring up legitimate issues since then.

    June 11, 2009 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  12. Tyler Derden

    What a surpirse that the party of No wants more fodder from a candidate for the third POLITICAL branch of this strange experiment we call democracy. Who knows... maybe someone will find a way to stop fighting and start working together? naaah The first rule of Fight Club is... you do not talk about Fight Club. This planet is doomed.

    June 11, 2009 01:07 am at 1:07 am |
  13. I am Newt's ex wife

    Put her under a microscope...all it does is make the GOP look like what it is...a party of old white angry men who watch Fox News.

    Take your bigot votes and save them for a rainy day.

    Why didn't the GOP slow down Roberts vote.....hypocrites.

    June 11, 2009 01:08 am at 1:08 am |
  14. Dee, 1 Vote

    Sen McC, "Time say's, are You a man or a mice". Time has changed, "Can You"?

    June 11, 2009 01:12 am at 1:12 am |
  15. Ray Becraft

    I am so disgusted by this pick. She is over her head in debt, belongs to an all female club, and will dictate law rather than follow it.

    Too bad she's not a white male. She wouldn't stand a chance.

    June 11, 2009 01:12 am at 1:12 am |
  16. Joan Wagner

    Why does everything have to be NOW all of a sudden. All this drama that the sky will fall if things don't change NOW....as in RIGHT NOW. We are set up to be a society that exlplores and debates issues... and instead we are having a "group think" mentality, and if you don't agree, you are dismissed.

    June 11, 2009 01:13 am at 1:13 am |
  17. Ricky

    When is the GOP going to stop with foolishness...

    June 11, 2009 01:15 am at 1:15 am |
  18. Dude

    The Repub's are being very childish to be honest.

    June 11, 2009 01:16 am at 1:16 am |
  19. Brian, Austin TX.

    Republican #1: Guys! This race thing isn't working! We need another excuse to go against this lady.

    Republican #2: Um, say that her menstrual cycle will get in the way of her decisions?

    Republican #1: No! G Gordan Liddy already tried that.

    Republican #3: Say that Democrats are rushing the decision to hide information?

    Republican #1: That's brilliant!

    June 11, 2009 01:26 am at 1:26 am |
  20. Trollmaster

    The GOP has not changed their ways. America needs to keep voting them out of office until they get the message that we're sick of their phony games.

    June 11, 2009 01:39 am at 1:39 am |
  21. Craig

    This smacks of perhaps the largest fishing trip ever...a Congressional junket at taxpayer's expense, with only the vaguest hope of catching anything. The plan consists of hoping that maybe, just maybe, there's some little thing out there that might be turned into a talking point. Let's face it, if she had any serious issues, they would have come up by now. I'm certain the diggers have read every opinion she's been involved in, every case she's ever ruled on, and probably every speech she's ever given in public.

    The hearing should determine if she's qualified, not whether she will agree with you in every case she might hear. She (apparently) has no track record on abortion, and we all know that's the "big test." Like every other appointee, she's not going to tell you how she would rule, so don't waste our time and yours.

    June 11, 2009 01:40 am at 1:40 am |
  22. Martin

    Just because the Republicans nominated inexperienced dimwits without a record to examine doesn't make it unfair for the Democrats to want a short timeline for someone who has actually picked up a book more than once in her life.

    June 11, 2009 01:41 am at 1:41 am |
  23. Jeff

    What is wrong with these Republicans, haven't they heard that we are supposed to give President Obama whatever he wants in hopes that he can "save us". Shame on CNN, The headline says" Republicans Issue Demand to Sotomayor" when in reality, they are simply asking for more information, as is their right and theirresponsiblity as members of the Senate Judiciary Committee. And the networks wonder why viewers are tuning out..

    June 11, 2009 01:43 am at 1:43 am |
  24. David Newport, OR

    The day is coming near for a new race war.

    June 11, 2009 01:47 am at 1:47 am |
  25. Big Jim from Texas

    Please be mature and just confirm this qualified jurist to the SCOTUS. I swear, sometimes I can't believe you are all grown men in the senate. You are starting to look more like ten year old boys with a grudge.

    June 11, 2009 02:00 am at 2:00 am |
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