June 19th, 2009
06:40 PM ET
12 years ago

Republican senator won't meet with Sotomayor

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/06/19/art.inhofe.gi.jpg caption="Inhofe has said he will vote against Sotomayor."](CNN) - As Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor continues to make the rounds on Capitol Hill, at least one senator is refusing to meet with her.

Sen. James Inhofe, the Oklahoma Republican who previously voted against Sotomayor's current post as a federal appeals court judge, told the Tulsa World Thursday it is a "foregone conclusion" that he would not support Obama's pick for the high court.

"If you voted against anyone on the circuit [court], I have never been able to see how you turn around when the bar is actually higher and support it at a higher level," Inhofe also said.

So when it came time for Sotomayor to meet with Inhofe to discuss her judicial philosophy, the Oklahoman declined.

"The reason is he already knows how he is going to vote and it's probably best not to take up her time, she's very busy," Inhofe communications director Jared Young told CNN.

Meanwhile, fellow Oklahoma Sen. Tom Coburn, also a Republican, met with Sotomayor Thursday, having what he described as a "philosophical discussion" with the high court nominee.

"It was more a philosophical discussion [about] life, problems in our country, difficulties we face," Coburn said.

Inhofe isn't the first Republican to explicitly proclaim his opposition to Sotomayor. Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts - who also voted against Sotomayor's nomination to the appeals court 11 years ago - said late last month he would again oppose her. A spokeswoman for Roberts did not know if the Kansas Republican has plans to meet with the nominee.

Sotomayor has met with more than 70 senators since Obama tapped her for the Supreme Court late last month.

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soundoff (400 Responses)
  1. The Party of NO

    Don't let your mind wander–It's far too small to be let out on it's own.

    June 19, 2009 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  2. Perusing-through

    SENATOR JAMES INHOFE IS STUPID AND SHORT ON WISDOM. People change and issues evolve. That includes Judge Sotomayor. Nothing is as dumb than for a U.S. Senator to base his opinion on a matter from 12-years ago, and not try to re-evaluate the issues for dynamic changes since then.

    June 19, 2009 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  3. Robert

    Inhofe: Here are few adj. for you, "Narrow minded, book bannig, truth censoring, like Rush Limbaugh, calling himself an entertainer, so he can't be censored and make you look good, mean spirited, cheapening, flag cheapening, God cheapening; the common man, shallow, small, sanctimonious." You are a "demagoguer" etc........

    June 19, 2009 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  4. Ian

    @Chris and Nicole,
    I dont care if you want to defend you racist, redneck state, but that is beside the point. Even if the senator will not vote for her, he should do his job. Meeting with her is not "politically correct" it is his freaking job!!! I dont see why you dont understand that. And to say that we elected an African American president out of "political correctness" is so racist that it is beyond words. Take a minute and look up "political correctness", I think it is annoying too, but you have the definition quite wrong. So the next time you are around one of those cumpuder thing a ma bobs, down there in oklahomi maybe you should take some time to read up a little, providing you know how to read, being from Oklahoma and all. And oh yeah, your state is a hick state, it is a piece of crap, and yes you should be ashamed that you live in a racist, white, conservative state, I am sick of all the people on here being politically correct (correct use of the term) and saying the Oklahoma is anything but that.

    June 19, 2009 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  5. DX in TX

    Come on people the senator from Oklahoma is only living up to his state 's reputation....hate crimes against Hispanics in Oklahoma are on the rise.

    God Bless the foolish....

    June 19, 2009 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  6. Chef Jeff

    Guess that puts civility to a quick end! Maybe we should ask the Senator if he could please come into the 21st Century!

    June 19, 2009 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  7. carlos

    repugnant reptiles just lost another 5 million latino votes, hehehehehe

    June 19, 2009 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  8. Rich in CA

    With Rush Limbaugh representing the GOP and FOX News attacking every move Obama makes, you don't need to wonder where the HATE comes from. I remember Sara Palin's campaign of HATE rallies (look them up in YouTube.com) screaming 'kill him', referring to President Obama. This Senator is just a continuation of that ignorance. Guess we'll just have to wait until they die of old age like Thurman. God Bless America!

    June 19, 2009 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  9. DSW

    Just another rude & ignorant Republican.
    A bit like most of the postings from Republican's...
    Did any of you actually look at her rulings from the Supreme Court!
    Oh to have a people in this country that actually READ THE FACTS and then spout off!!!

    June 19, 2009 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  10. feckless

    This man is nothing but a close minded bigot, racial and otherwise.

    He is a disgrace to the US Senate.

    It is un-christian to refuse to even speak to your opponents.

    I pray Mr. Inhofe will come to actually understand the christianity he claims so virulently to represent.

    June 19, 2009 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  11. sara

    Ignorant Bigot....... OK get this "jerk" out of your districts. But I know Sotomeyor don't give a f... if he didn't. He couldn't measure up to the "Bottom of her Cast.

    June 19, 2009 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  12. Creative Woody

    I like my headline better:
    GOP Senator shakes tiny impotent fists.

    June 19, 2009 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  13. Chris

    Interesting that the two senators in this article are from the South...

    June 19, 2009 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  14. Bev - NYC

    Oh yes more bi-partisan support from the country first, family values Wing. Wouldn't want to meet someone I dis-agree with and have a grown up discussion when my little mind is made up. Hope you don't have any scandals brewing Sen. James Inhofe, the fall will hurt from your moral high horse.

    June 19, 2009 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  15. west2910

    I'm not surprised........Bipartisonship at its best. Typical Republican.

    June 19, 2009 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  16. G in BR

    to Brad – TX June 19th, 2009 4:44 pm ET

    Let me see if I can school you on a few things. If you turn your nose up and look away when I walk into the room so you don't have to say hello, don't look at me in the eyes when you speak to me, refuse to shake my hand, wipe your hand if you have to shake my hand, turn red when I walk into the interview room, refuse to sit next to me at any functions, etc. etc. that may be an indication that you may be racist. Identifying racist behavior does not qualify me as being racist. You probably have never had a conversation let alone know any minorities so I wonder how you have made the decision to identify most minorities as racist. As you can tell from the above examples, I have encountered my share of racist individuals so I believe this wise african-american can make a better judgement about who a racist is than you sir!!!

    June 19, 2009 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  17. Aaron, Chicago

    No surprise, Inhoffe is a bigot who doesn't understand the economy, doesn't understand the world, and doesn't understand environmental dangers. Clearly one of the most dangerous people in Washington.

    June 19, 2009 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  18. Michael

    I had hoped that Jesse Helms was among the last of a dying breed of knuckle-draggers. Sad to see that Inhofe continues to carry that pathetic torch.

    June 19, 2009 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  19. GOP = 21st century dodo


    The GOP has an immense ability to ignore logic, reason, facts, but I did not know that they were also ignoring maps now.

    June 19, 2009 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  20. Joseph, Los Angeles California

    Even I would give my dog a second chance... What a dufus!

    June 19, 2009 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  21. Anthony Ames

    Of COURSE one needn't display common courtesy toward anyone one disagrees with.

    June 19, 2009 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  22. ANNY

    I am from Oklahoma and so embarrassed and ashamed that we have a Senator that is so racist, so full of Hate, and is one of those White men that think women belong in the kitchen , barefoot, and pregnant

    June 19, 2009 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  23. kirk

    Is he afraid if he talks to her her might actually like her?

    While the republicans are acting like children these days, I want to speak out to people expressing hatred for them.

    It's difficult not to be outraged at republicans, with the endless hatred for Obama, which smacks of latent racism, the behavior of the FOX news bunch, insanely hypocritical and megalomaniacal wanna bees like Huckaby, backwards (on seemingly every single issue) people like McCain (I have some hope for his daughter though), and outright lying manipulators like Limbaugh...I totally understand, and that outrage is so tested, I understand the feeling of hatred rising up...because it comes really from their first hatred, which is obviously what they do a terrible job of masking behind their rhetoric.

    But if we sink to their level, we're frankly doing no better. For all the lies and outright fraudulent comments they make and actually BELIEVE, our president stands tall, stays his course and doesn't bite. Years from now, in retrospect, he may well be admired most for this very quality.

    So I ask you, just one voice, no body special and I don't mean to judge, but let's let them spew their vile hatred, and let's not bite. Only then will it become evident to all and seen for what it really is.

    Let them insult, lie and throw their tantrums. Be kind and patient. As ugly as they are right now, remember it's not really coming from the best inside them.

    I realized as I watched a documentary the other night about Jefferson, that the greatest American's in our history all had one quality that set them apart and was the true driving force behind our constitution and what is best about this country. It is spirit. And spirit is something that rises above the negative aspects of human nature (the kind of negative aspects that the republicans are displaying so conspicuously these days.) There is no power in these negative displays, in fact, it will continue to be their downfall as long as they keep adhering to it.

    Let's not go down with them. Most of us can already see this great American spirit in our president. He's not perfect, no one is, but he has that quality. So the best way we can support him is to find that same spirit within ourselves, and maybe, just maybe, the republicans will be elevated by it too, when we stop sinking to their level.

    I'm no body. I don't mean to sound as if I think I am. But please give these words some thought.


    June 19, 2009 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  24. Deepsix

    It's time our elected representatives remember that they are elected and who elected them. They are not little divine royalty. They are still in office because too many people don't vote. Don't gripe in blogs, gripe the next time you vote. BTW: it's not just OK, there's other states too that need to gripe at the ballot box. Email your elected officials and reming them that they are elected to represent their electorates. I've complained to mine. If you can write your comment on an article, you can also email it to your elected representative.

    June 19, 2009 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
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