Morgen on July 14, 2009 at 5:36 pm
As anyone knows who has followed my commentary over the past few days, I fully expected we’d hear some creative spin from Judge Sotomayor explaining her infamous “wise Latina” speech. Certainly I expected her to downplay the significance of those particular words, and perhaps even acknowledge as others have in her defense that they were chosen poorly. But I would have never imagined that she would have the audacity to attempt to wholly reinvent the plain meaning of her own words.
Senator Sessions, Kyl, and Graham all pressed her on this issue today. I am still going through the testimony but I was particularly impressed by Senator Kyl’s line of questioning. The clip I linked below is pretty long. But Kyl does a superb job summarizing the full context of her “wise Latina” speech, and in cross-examining her initial response. It’s worth the time if you have it – watch:
She could have stuck with her initial line of defense based around her 17 year track record as a judge, and simply said that she regretted her choice of words. In doing so she would have put the burden on her Republican questioners to demonstrate somehow that her record as a whole reflects any sort of gender or ethnic bias. (It does not.)
But whether based on pride, or perhaps a sense of empowerment due to her near certain confirmation, she chose to claim that her speech was not a statement of her beliefs regarding the positive impact of race and gender on judicial decisions. And it defies any sort of reasonable explanation – other than that she is just simply not telling the truth.
There is some great coverage of today’s hearing throughout the blogosphere. I recommend Ace on the perjury angle, Hot Air on some great questioning by Senator Graham, and Rush for a broad overview like only he can do.
There will be another round of questioning tomorrow, so I will link the live feed again in the morning.
John Adds: A couple more links. Allah puts up 30 minutes of questioning by Senator Graham. I thought he was extremely fair but made the point that it’s only because she’s a minority that she’s getting away with a statement like this. That’s exactly right. See Trent Lott for details.
Also, don’t miss the Fact Check which points out that Senator Leahy tried to dishonestly make the “wise Latina” comment go away earlier today. Nice try, Pat.