Sunday, May 31, 2009


Under the din of the screamers, there are some who have actually taken time to look at Judge Sotomayor's record. One such can be read here, confirming what I've already said. An important paragraph therein:

In sum, in an eleven-year career on the Second Circuit, Judge Sotomayor has participated in roughly 100 panel decisions involving questions of race and has disagreed with her colleagues in those cases (a fair measure of whether she is an outlier) a total of 4 times. Only one case (Gant) in that entire eleven years actually involved the question whether race discrimination may have occurred. (In another case (Pappas) she dissented to favor a white bigot.) She particulated in two other panels rejecting district court rulings agreeing with race-based jury-selection claims. Given that record, it seems absurd to say that Judge Sotomayor allows race to infect her decisionmaking.

I'm sure this will end the hyperventilation.

Aren't you?


  1. It doesn't bother you a little bit that with that Type 1 Diabetes she probably won't last much more than 10 years on the court??? Guess you're expectin a 20 yr run like FDR/Truman put together...course that was before term limits...Might wanta take care of that pesky 22d Ammendment while ya got the Muscle...


    P.S. If bein a Latina' is such a great thing, why not J-lo??? she'll last longer and go much easier on the eyes...

  2. Based on your reasoning, you would also support a surgeon's promotion to Chairman of Surgery who does 99/100 lap choles without damaging the common bile duct?

    Making an "occasional bad decision" is not acceptable in jobs like surgeon or Supreme Court Justice.

    Ask the jaundiced guy, or the guy who outperformed his peers only to have his promotion stripped away how impressed they are by their surgeon's/judge's academic pedigree and track record.

    Precordial Thump

  3. PT: First of all, who said she made a "bad" decision? The point is that there's nothing to support the hue and cry that she's biased in her decisions. Her decisions, by review, are within the mainstream. And, because judging is different from surgery in that, among many things, it's not as black and white as an intact bile duct, your question compares pumpkins to perfume.

    Most Supreme Court decisions are split decisions. There have even been dissents in agreement, when a Justice thinks the decision is right but the reasoning isn't. So "bad" decisions, in the context you suggest, are incredibly hard to define, much less identify.

    But once again, your comment is off the point of my post. At least there's a name attached to it, and that is appreciated.

  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  5. The above comment, in addition to being unsigned anonymous, added nothing new to the conversation, made no interesting points, was irrelevant to the content of the post, and entirely boring. A blog of this unquestioned caliber deserves higher quality of snidery.

    At least Frank is often funny, and Precordial Thump asked an interesting question.

  6. So I read a funny joke online the other day and thought I'd share.

    What do you call a basement full of liberals? A wine cellar.



  7. Not bad, Mike. I don't have a basement but I have a couple of coolers and a couple of racks. So I qualify.

  8. “If your test is going to always put a certain group at the bottom of the pass rate so they’re never, ever going to be promoted, and there is a fair test that could be devised that measures knowledge in a more substantive way, then why shouldn’t the city have an opportunity to try to look and see if it can develop that?”

    -Judge Sotomayor (see May 29th WSJ online for audio of case)

    What is the basis for her assumption that one group will "always" be at the bottom based on the results of one test?

    If the test had obvious signs of bias, how come she did not point them out to strengthen her opinion?

    How come no media source anywhere has reproduced the test with solid evidence supporting her claim that the test was unfair in someway?

    Is the fact that zero African Americans (who made up 27 of 100 test takers)ended up in the top ten proof that the test is "biased" as the justice is assuming as fact in her above statement? (25% of the top ten would have been only 2-3 African Americans in top ten)

    Was the sample size too small?
    Are the results statistically significant?

    In my humble opinion, promoting the top performers & then adjusting the test to make it more "equitable" (not sure how to do that) in the upcoming years would have been fair to all parties.

    Was it her job to decide if the firemen had to/didn't have to be promoted, or decide that the city simply had the LEGAL RIGHT to discard the results?

    If it's the former, I feel her logic is weak. If it's the latter, I don't know the laws so I have no opinion.

    It really would be helpful if a media source could break this down objectively like the artcle you linked.

    Precordial Thump

  9. PT: I agree it'd be nice to see a more thorough dissection of the laws and specific facts at issue. It is the case, however, that the decision was a unanimous decision of a three-judge panel, at least one of which was a conservative appointee.

    What I don't entirely understand is why the hot-talk suggests that it was only her decision. It is also, evidently, the case that she expressed sympathy for the aggrieved but decided on the basis of existing law, upholding a decision of a lower court. So I understand.

  10. I should add that I know the info is out there; I just haven't gone to any more trouble to find it than that one link.


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