[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/07/13/art.graham.cnn.jpg caption="Kyl"]WASHINGTON (CNN) - A Republican member of the Senate Judiciary Committee said Monday that Sonia Sotomayor is likely to be confirmed as the first Hispanic justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.
"Unless you have a complete meltdown, you're going to get confirmed," Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina said in his opening statement at the confirmation hearing for Sotomayor, a federal appellate judge.
Graham described Sotomayor as "someone of good character," but he questioned her past speeches that he said expressed the possibility of bias based on gender or race.
In particular, Graham said he questioned Sotomayor's repeated comment that a wise Latina woman could make a better decision than a white man.
"If I said anything remotely like that, my career would have been over," Graham said, adding that "it just bothers me when somebody wearing a robe takes the robe off and says their experience makes them better than someone else."