Scenes from the Last Sotomayor Fight

In June 1998, Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., the current chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, spoke about President Bill Clinton’s nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to her current position on the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals.

"Judge Sonia Sotomayor is just such a qualified nominee, and she is one being held up by the Republican majority, apparently because some on the other side of the aisle believe she might one day be considered by President Clinton for nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court, should a vacancy arise,” Leahy said .

Leahy was upset that Senate confirmation of then-District Court Judge Sotomayor had been stalled for seven months “without any explanation or justification” through a secret hold.

“Late this summer, a column in the Wall Street Journal noted that Judge Sotomayor was being held up on the Republican side of the aisle because of speculation that she might one day be considered by President Clinton for nomination to the United States Supreme Court. This was confirmed by a report in the New York Times on June 14. As I said earlier, this has not been the Senate's finest hour.”

“How petty,” Leahy said, “how mean, how wrong.”

Courtesy of our friends at C-SPAN.

-- jpt

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