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Supreme Court Nominee Sonia
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Judicial Activist Sotomayor--her own words:
of appeals is where policy is made. And I know – and I know this is on
tape and I should never say that because we don't make law, I know.
I know. I'm not promoting it, and I'm not advocating it, I'm – you know.
OK. (giggles, audience laughs) Having said that, the court of appeals is where, before the Supreme
Court makes the final decision, the law is percolating – its
interpretation, its application."
WorldNetDaily Duke University School of Law, 2005
"I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the
richness of her experience would more often than not reach a better
conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life." Sotomayor
at the Berkeley School of Law, 2001
“I do not disclaim in this thesis that I do not
reflect my own bias toward independence for Puerto Rico.”
Sotomayor's 1976 thesis
Obama on Judicial
Selection: "We need somebody who’s got the heart, the empathy, to
recognize what it’s like to be a young teenage mom. The empathy to
understand what it’s like to be poor, or African American, or gay, or
disabled, or old. And that’s the criteria by which I’m going to be
selecting my judges." (nothing about understanding the
intent of the Constitution) Obama's speech to Planned Parenthood, 2007
Please call your
Senators at 202-224-3121 and email them
in opposition to Sotomayor's nomination.
talk shows to encourage others to call
the Senate in opposition to Sotomayor.
Write a letter to the
editor listing one or more reasons she is unqualified.
Call the RNC (202-863-8500)
and DNC (202-863-8000), tell
them that the Senators they fund must follow your views.
Ask and email your
friends to help stop the nomination.
Please make a
donation now to help.
For further information, contact:
Charles Orndorff, 703-938-9626
QUESTIONS WHICH JUDGE SOTOMAYOR SHOULD BE
Howard Phillips, Chairman of The Conservative Caucus, has
called upon members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to probe
Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor regarding the following
1. What relation, in your view, does the Declaration
of Independence bear to the Constitution of the United
2. Do you agree with the statement in the Declaration
that "all Men…are endowed by their Creator with
certain unalienable Rights"?
3. The Preamble of the Constitution asserts that "We
the People of the United States, in Order to form a more
perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic
Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the
general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to
ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this
Constitution for the United States of America." Do you
agree that "We the People" are the source of
authority for the Constitution and everything in it?
4. How do you interpret the term "promote the
5. Article I, Section 1 says "All legislative Powers
herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United
States". Do you believe that legislative powers
may be exercised by entities other than the Congress? What
about the Federal Reserve? May it exercise legislative
powers? What about regulatory agencies? What about the Civil
Service? What about Presidential Executive Orders? What
about international organizations such as the World Trade
Organization (WTO)? What about NAFTA? What about the
6. In the event of a national calamity, it is possible
that many members of Congress may suffer death or
disability. Article I, Section 5 asserts that "a Majority
of each [House] shall constitute a Quorum to do
Business". In your view, how ought such a majority be
defined? Would it be a majority of the living? A majority of
those physically and mentally capable? What would it be?
7. Do you attach any religious significance to the
language in Article I, Section 7 which, in defining the time
available to the President to consider whether he shall veto
a piece of legislation which has arrived on his desk,
permits him "ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall
have been presented to him". Is there a Christian
premise to this language in the Constitution?
8. Article I, Section 8 says "The Congress shall have
Power to lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises,
to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and
general Welfare of the United States". Do you believe
that the power of Congress, as stipulated, is limited to
those matters set forth in Article I, Section 8?
9. Article I, Section 8 says "Congress shall have
Power…To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations". Did
Congress violate this provision in accepting U.S.
participation in the WTO, in NAFTA, and in CAFTA?
10. Article I, Section 8 says "Congress shall have
Power…To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of
foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures".
Does this not imply that our money shall be of fixed value,
not subject to regulation by an entity such as the
11. Article I, Section 8 says "Congress shall have
Power…To declare War". To what extent can the
President intrude on this authority?
12. Article I, Section 8 says "Congress shall have
Power…To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute
the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel
Invasions". What is your understanding of the term "the
13. Article I, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution
asserts that no State shall "make any Thing but gold
and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts". How
do you interpret this requirement and its current
14. Article II, Section 1 sets forth the oath to be taken
by the President: "Before he enter on the Execution of
his Office … ‘I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I
will faithfully execute the Office of President of the
United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve,
protect and defend the Constitution of the United
States.’ " In your opinion, has President Bush
faithfully, consistently, and without exception defended the
Constitution of the United States?
15. Article II, Section 2 states that the President "shall
have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the
Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the
Senators present concur". Do you believe that U.S.
participation in NAFTA and the World Trade Organization
should have required, as treaties, a two thirds vote of the
Senators present and voting?
16. Do you regard as valid Executive Agreements
which may be entered into by the President of the United
17. Article III, Section 1 says "The Judges, both of
the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices
during good Behaviour". (a) How do you define "good
behaviour"? (b) If a judge is found to have violated
standards of "good behaviour", may such a judge be removed
from office by simple majority vote of the Senate, which
confirmed his appointment to office?
18. Article III, Section 2 says "The judicial Power
shall extend to all Cases, in Law and Equity, arising under
this Constitution, the Laws of the United States, and
Treaties made, or which shall be made, under their
Authority;—to all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public
Ministers and Consuls;—to all Cases of admiralty and
maritime Jurisdiction;—to Controversies to which the United
States shall be a Party;—to Controversies between two or
more States;… —between Citizens of different States,
—between Citizens of the same State claiming Lands under
Grants of different States…. In all Cases affecting
Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those
in which a State shall be Party, the supreme Court shall
have original Jurisdiction. In all the other Cases before
mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate
Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions,
and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make."
What restrictions, if any, do you think are permissible on
the authority of Congress to limit the appellate
jurisdiction of the Supreme Court?
19. Article III, Section 2 stipulates that "The Trial
of all Crimes, except in Cases of Impeachment; shall be by
Jury; and such Trial shall be held in the State where the
said Crimes shall have been committed; but when not
committed within any State, the Trial shall be at such Place
or Places as the Congress may by Law have directed." The
U.N.’s proposed International Criminal Court (ICC)
treaty seems to be in clear violation of these provisions.
Do you agree that it would be un-Constitutional for the
Senate to ratify the International Criminal Court (ICC)
20. Article IV, Section 1 of the U.S. Constitution says "Full
Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public
Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other
State; And the Congress may by general Laws prescribe the
Manner in which such Acts, Records and Proceedings shall be
proved, and the Effect thereof." In your opinion, does
this language require other states to recognize the
Massachusetts "same sex" marriage procedures?
21. Article IV, Section 4 says "The United States
shall guarantee to every State in this Union a republican
Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against
Invasion". In your view, what is the Federal government
required to do in response to the invasion of illegal
aliens which has particularly affected such states as
California, Arizona, and Texas, among others?
22. Article VI says "This Constitution, and the Laws
of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance
thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made,
under the Authority of the United States, shall be the
supreme Law of the Land". In your view, does this
require that treaties ratified by the U.S. Senate are
the "supreme Law of the Land", even when such treaties are
in conflict with provisions of the U.S. Constitution?
23. The First Amendment to the Constitution stipulates
that "Congress shall make no law respecting an
establishment of religion". (a) Do you agree that
this language was included in the Constitution to prevent
any interference by the Federal government in the
establishments of religion which existed by authority of the
legislatures of the several states which had joined in
ratifying the Constitution? (b) In your view, are different
interpretations of this clause valid for purposes of
24. The Second Amendment says "A well regulated
Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,
the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be
infringed." Do you believe that in light of this
language any or all of Federally enacted gun control
laws are Constitutionally valid?
25. According to the Fourth Amendment, "The right of
the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers,
and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures,
shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon
probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and
particularly describing the place to be searched, and the
persons or things to be seized." (a) Do you believe that
any branch of the Federal government has the authority to
violate the Fourth Amendment for any reason whatsoever? (b)
Do you believe that the requirements of the Fourth
Amendment have ever been violated by the Federal
government, if so, when, by whom, and in what circumstances?
26. The Fifth Amendment says that "nor shall any
person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in
jeopardy of life or limb". Was not this provision
set aside in the Rodney King case when law enforcement
personnel were prosecuted for the same alleged offense under
both state and Federal law?
27. The Sixth Amendment requires that "In all criminal
prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a
speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the
State and district wherein the crime shall have been
committed". (a) How do you interpret the term "speedy"?
(b) When, in accordance with your definition, this provision
is violated, what should be the remedy?
28. The Eighth Amendment says that "cruel and
unusual punishments" may not be inflicted. How would
you define a cruel and unusual punishment?
29. The Tenth Amendment says that "The powers not
delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor
prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States
respectively, or to the people." (a) When powers which
Constitutionally ought be reserved to the states are usurped
by the Federal government, what remedy is available to
states thus aggrieved? (b) Is nullification a valid
response? (c) Is interposition an appropriate
30. The Thirteenth Amendment says that "Neither slavery
nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime
whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall
exist within the United States, or any place subject to
their jurisdiction." In your view, does adherence to this
amendment preclude the possibility of a military draft?
31. Many people have questioned the inclusion of the
Fourteenth Amendment in the U.S. Constitution, inasmuch
as part of a conditional readmission to the Union, certain
southern states were required to ratify this amendment. In
some cases, ratification was enforced at the point of a gun
by occupying military troops. (a) Do you think the
Fourteenth Amendment was properly ratified? (b) If not, do
you believe it should be enforced?
32. The Fourteenth Amendment says that no state may "deprive
any person of life, liberty, or property, without due
process of law". (a) In your view, at what point does
the unborn child qualify for consideration as a
person? (b) At such point, does it become unconstitutional
to deprive any such person of life without such person
having been duly convicted of a crime by a jury of his or
33. The Fourteenth Amendment also says that no person
shall be denied "the equal protection of the laws".
In your view, does this make affirmative action laws
34. The Sixteenth Amendment says that "The Congress
shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes,
from whatever source derived, without apportionment among
the several States, and without regard to any census or
enumeration." How do you define the term "incomes"?
35. The Nineteenth Amendment says "The right of
citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or
abridged by the United States or by any State on account
of sex". Does this use of the word "sex" refer
exclusively to gender, or can it be construed to cover
36. The XXVII Amendment to the Constitution says "No
Law, varying the compensation for the services of the
Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an
election of Representatives shall have intervened." This
language seems to preclude members of Congress from
accepting pay increases recommended by commissions or
operating in reliance on changes in the cost of living.
What is your view?
For further information, contact:
Charles Orndorff, 703-938-9626
EMPATHY, IMPARTIALITY, AND JUSTICE: WHY SONIA SOTOMAYOR IS NOT QUALIFIED TO BE OUR NEXT U.S. SUPREME COURT
Bob Renaud, a member of the Board of Directors of The
Conservative Caucus, has issued the following analysis of
President Barack Obama’s nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to
serve on the U.S. Supreme Court:
"President Barack Obama was just past his first ‘100 days in
office’ when David Souter’s retirement gave him the opportunity
to submit his first Supreme Court nominee to Congress. He had
been planning for this moment. During his campaign for the
presidency, Obama explained what he would look for in a nominee
to the high court:
" ‘We need somebody who’s got the heart, the empathy, to
recognize what it’s like to be a young teenage mom. The empathy
to understand what it’s like to be poor, or African American, or
gay, or disabled, or old. And that’s the criteria by which I’m
going to be selecting my judges.’
"President Obama reiterated his commitment to ‘empathy’ last
week when he commented on Justice Souter’s resignation. He
promised to seek someone ‘who understands that justice isn’t
about some abstract legal theory or footnote in a casebook.’
Apparently, to President Obama, a basic understanding of the
plain text of the Constitution is now ‘abstract legal theory.’
But empathy, he says, will produce justice.
"Once again, President Obama has demonstrated that the
‘change we can believe in’ is not the change we need in this
country. What we need is a change towards constitutional and
"Writing in 1833 in his famous Commentaries on the
Constitution, Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story explained that
empathy is not the same as justice. Justice must be ‘freely,
fully, and impartially administered.’ Without impartial justice,
‘neither our persons, nor our rights, nor our property, can be
protected. And if these, or either of them, are regulated by no
certain laws, and are subject to no certain principles, and are
held by no certain tenure, and are redressed, when violated, by
no certain remedies, society fails of all its value; and men may
as well return to a state of savage and barbarous independence.’
"By seeking to nominate to the high court, judges who ‘got
the heart, the empathy’ — as opposed to judges who are faithful
to the law of the land — we are heading toward that ‘state of
savage and barbarous independence’ that Justice Story warned
about. That was two centuries ago. Justice Story wasn’t the
"Writing 3,500 years ago in the book of Leviticus, the
ultimate Law-giver explained the proper role of judges:
" ‘Ye shall do no unrighteousness in judgment: thou shalt not
respect the person of the poor, nor honor the person of the
mighty: but in righteousness shalt thou judge thy neighbour’
"In this text of Scripture, there is no reference to how
judges feel about a matter, or how judges should ‘empathize’
with the parties to the case, or even how judges should use
their own ethnic background to decide the matter before the bar.
The command is to ‘not respect the person of the poor, nor honor
the person of the mighty.’ Not feel their pain!
"Contrary to what the ACLU or even the president himself
might want, our legal system has codified this biblical command
not to respect either the ‘poor’ or the ‘mighty’ in our own
republic. The United States Code prescribes the oath that all
federal justices or judges are to swear or affirm before
performing their duties. The oath states:
" ‘I, [name], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will
administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal
right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully
and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent
upon me as [job title] under the Constitution and laws of the
United States. So help me God.’
"President Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court, Judge Sonia
Sotomayor, was picked for her empathy rather than her
impartiality. In fact, Judge Sotomayor has a record of showing
partiality both in her written opinions and as well as outside
"In a 2001 speech at the University of California at
Berkeley, Judge Sotomayor said that the ethnicity and sex of a
judge ‘may and will make a difference in our judging.’ She went
on to declare that ‘I would hope that a wise Latina woman with
the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach
a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that
"Fast forward to 2008, where we see how Judge Sotomayor
applies her judicial philosophy of ‘empathy’ in the case of
Ricci v. DeStefano (now before the U.S. Supreme Court). In that
case, local firefighters in New Haven, Connecticut, took an
examination in hopes of getting promoted. When the results came
out, the majority of those who took the test and passed were
‘white.’ The town decided to disregard that exam. The
firefighters who passed the test were passed up for promotion,
and they sued the town for reverse discrimination. On appeal to
the Second Circuit Court where Judge Sotomayor sits, Judge
Sotomayor refused to examine the issues of the ‘white’ firemen
and threw out the case. So much for Judge Sotomayor’s ‘empathy’
for both sides.
"And finally, one cannot forget the gaffe committed in 2005
in which Judge Sotomayor explained at a Duke Law School forum
that it is at ‘the court of appeals is where policy is made.’
Isn’t that the job of the legislature? Judge Sotomayor caught
her mistake and quickly said, ‘We don’t make law, I’m not
promoting that, I’m not advocating that, you know.’ However, you
have to ask yourself, how does an ‘extremely qualified’ judge
make a mistake like that?
"Jesus Christ said that ‘out of the abundance of the heart
the mouth speaks.’
"I think it’s clear where Judge Sotomayor’s heart is — she
thinks that her job is to ‘empathize’ with the parties before
her as opposed to judging ‘in righteousness . . . thy neighbour.’
And this is why she is disqualified to be our next U.S. Supreme
1. A widely quoted 2007 speech that
then Sen. Obama gave to Planned Parenthood. http://voices.washingtonpost.com/supreme-court/2009/05/obamasempathystandard_drawin.html?hpid=news-col-blog
3. Title 28 chapter 21 § 453.
Mr. Renaud is in his final year of law school at the Oak
Brook School of Law in Fresno, California and is an official of
Vision Forum Ministries in San Antonio, Texas.