Sonia Sotomayor Becomes 111th Supreme Court Justice, 68-31

Sonia_Sotomayor_portraitWashington D.C. — The first Latino and third woman Supreme Court justice, Sonia Sotomayor was confirmed in a 68-31 vote earlier today. Nine Republicans crossed the aisle, mostly senators who will be retiring after this term, and all Democrats voted to confirm.

President Obama praised the vote to approve Judge Sonia Soromayor as the 11th Supreme Court judge today saying that he was “deeply gratified”.  He reminded reporters that the Sotomayor’s uniquely American story was made possible by the fulfillment of the ideals of justice, equality, and opportunity.

Predictably, Republican senators tried to label her too liberal based on statements made during various speeches. The “wise Latina” rhetoric may prove to have far reaching consequences with Latino voters and women in the next election. Many Latino/Hispanic leaders found Republican tone during senate hearings to be condescending and bordering on racist in some instances.  

Chief Justice John G. Roberts is expected to swear in Sotomayor in the next few days, however a formal ceremony will probably occur sometime in September. Sotomayor replaces Justice david H. Souter who retired in June.

  4 comments for “Sonia Sotomayor Becomes 111th Supreme Court Justice, 68-31

  1. August 7, 2009 at 10:40 am

    I’m a little worried about this appointment. Being Cuban myself, I applaud them for finally appointing a Hispanic, as that was long overdue. I feel though that there were better options out there.

    Sotamayor’s financial irresponsibility troubles me. She does not live within her means, and this usually reflects irresponsibility in other aspects of her life. I wish her well, but I find that aspect extremely troubling.

    Check out my blog about her personal finances at

  2. Misha Houser
    August 7, 2009 at 12:04 pm

    Judging a person negatively because they don’t invest in stocks and bonds is ludicrous. I used to own a variety of stock until the dotcom crash when I lost a lot.

    I don’t have the confidence that stocks will provide for my retirement, and I don’t think I’m alone in that belief. I thought the old standard investment was real estate, which seems to be where she has placed her faith. What’s your point?

  3. RHackett
    August 7, 2009 at 1:36 pm


    You must not know much about living in NYC. $200K ain’t all that much. A box costs as much as a mansion in Missouri and lunch will easily set you back the equivalent of a c-note.

    I had no idea that conservatives were so concerned about how an individual desires to live their life or spend their money. I was always under the impression they believed one’s private life was their own.

    The ironometer needle is pegged on this one.

  4. August 7, 2009 at 3:35 pm

    Perhaps the reason Justice Sotomayor (that sure sounds good) owns no stocks or bonds is to avoid the potential for a conflict of interest should any of those companies appear before her as party to a case.

    In his blog, Mr. Fitton says that Sotomayor’s debt is twice the national average. Interesting. He estimates her annual income at $200,000. Well, that’s four times the median income of $50,233 (all adults, from the Census Bureau)and more than five times the median income for women ($35,102, again from the Census).

    But this passage really caught my eye. “When compared to the other justices of the supreme court, Sotamayor definitely is not in the same ballpark. Justice Samuel Alito’s stock portfolio alone is valued at more than Sotamayor’s entire net worth. Justice John Roberts was making more a year from his job at a law firm before his nomination, than Sotamayor’s entire net worth,” It is as if to say that being a rich white male is the ticket to the bench. Women of color need not approach — except as defendants.


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