Obama Nominates Supreme Court Justice

WASHINGTON: President Obama has nominated Sonia Sotomayor to replace outgoing Justice David Souter on the U.S. Supreme Court. Sotomayor has spent the last 11 years on the bench of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York where she presided over around 450 cases. The Second Circuit heard indecency charges against broadcasters in recent years, bouncing the FCC’s fine levied against Fox for fleeting expletives. The Supreme Court recently told it to reconsider that decision. Sotomayor, however, was among the judges who heard the case.

Before her appointment to the Second Circuit by President Clinton, she was appointed to the District Court for the Southern District of New York by President George H.W. Bush. She previously was a partner with Pavia and Harcourt, and before that, an assistant district attorney in Manhattan. Sotomayor graduated from Yale Law School. If she’s confirmed by the Senate, she will be the first Hispanic American on the Supreme Court.

In his nominating remarks, Obama related the trajectory Sotomayor’s life from a housing project in the Bronx. Her parents immigrated from Puerto Rico during WWII, and her mother become a single parent when her father passed away when Sotomayor was nine years old.

Reaction on Capital Hill was guarded, according to The Wall Street Journal. Republicans took care to say Sotomayor would be treated fairly. Obama said he hoped Sotomayor could be seated in September. -- Deborah D. McAdams