Friday, July 24, 2009

The Sotomayor Vote (cont'd)

Now that Sonia Sotomayor is virtually certain to be confirmed by the Senate to be an associate justice of the Supreme Court, I suppose it doesn't really matter how many votes she gets. But it's the sort of thing that political wonks like me find interesting.

I was surprised to find out that Republican Senators John Cornyn of Texas and Jon Kyl of Arizona plan to vote against Sotomayor.

When I predicted in this post that she would get at least 77 votes, I was assuming that Republican senators from states with high Hispanic populations, such as Florida, Texas and Arizona, would go along with making her the first Hispanic justice.

We'll see if there's any backlash against them in their respective states. Kyl is next up for reelection in 2012, and Cornyn in 2014.

Senator Mel Martinez, Republican of Florida, who has announced that he won't seek reelection next year, has said he will vote in favor of Sotomayor's confirmation.

As far as I know, the other Republican senators from the states listed above, John McCain of Arizona, and Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas, are still on the fence.

Senators on the Republican right are taking a more hardline stance on this nomination than I expected. It currently seems as though Sotomayor won't get more than about 75 votes.

1 comment:

Terry L. Johnson said...

Your comments about there being political implications of hispanic states being put-off by senators voting against sotomayor is troubling - but likely accurate.

The election of Obama while seemingly a huge hurdle successfully negotiated in terms of race relations, has not quelled those who divide on race (or culture). So, we vote to appease ethnic or racial groups still?

Caused me to go back and re-read the text from Dr. King's speech. The "I have a dream" speech. So much of what he dreamed of has come true: higher percentage of whites voted for Obama in Alabama than did they in California.

The cultural and historical landmarks which are critical to me (aged 53) are not the same as those younger. King's speech evokes great emotion to me, and to the Gen X and Gen Y he it is merely a footnote in a history book.

Yet, where we measure the content of sotomayer's soul, we do so only with political consultants.

I don't think this is what Dr. King had in mind.