Nominee may be a first

May 26, 2009
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President Barack Obama has chosen who he thinks is the right person for the U.S. Supreme Court: 2nd District Judge Sonia Sotomayor. Baseball fans may recognize her name because she was the District judge who issued the injunction against Major League Baseball owners, effectively ending the baseball strike that led to the cancellation of the World Series in 1994.

What is more noteworthy than her being the person who saved baseball is that if confirmed, she’d be the first Hispanic to take the bench on the nation’s highest court.

What strikes me about Judge Sotomayor is her sort of “rags to riches” story. Her background is one that many Americans can relate to, even if they didn’t attend prestigious Ivy League schools for undergraduate and law studies.

The judge’s Puerto Rican parents came to New York during World War II; her father died when she was nine, leaving her mother to raise her and her brother alone. Judge Sotomayor received a scholarship to Princeton University for her undergraduate degree and then earned her J.D. from Yale Law School.

In his remarks about Judge Sotomayor, Obama said he selected her not only for her intellect and recognition of the limits of the judicial role, but also for her life experience. The judge would bring more judicial experience and a varied experience than anyone currently serving on the Supreme Court when they were appointed. The president also noted she would replace Justice David Souter as the only justice with experience as a trial judge.

What do you think of Judge Sotomayor for the Supreme Court? What are the chances she’ll be confirmed and if so, how will she affect the court?
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  • She is very likely to be confirmed unless there is a smoking gun discovered which causes her to lose support.

    Her confirmation is not likely to change the Supreme Court very much as she is replacing David Souter who has been a solid liberal vote for many years.

    She would not be the first Hispanic on the Supreme Court -- Benjamin Cardozo was -- a descendant of Portuguese (also Hispanic).

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  1. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  2. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  3. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

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  5. "No one is safe when the Legislature is in session."

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