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tv   [untitled]  CSPAN  June 25, 2009 6:00am-6:30am EDT

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criticism of that. afterwards the underlying question, is it somehow more fertile territory taking a look at this -- >> i think there's been a lot of discussion about the speeches that she's made. .
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this is the opposite of attacking a nominee. we are raising questions. that is our duty under the constitution. i think it is unfair to characterize that we are doing an attack. we are raising issues asking legitimate questions. we want a nominee to respond to them. i would once again say this is in stark contrast to perhaps the
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first hispanic nominee if he had not been filibustered seven times and not offered a job by democrats. in contrast to the disrespectful and unfair process, i think this stands in stark contrast. we want to raise issues and do our job under the constitution. >> why do you think she and the panel [unintelligible] >> i will read you some sentences. on page three, she says the 14th amendment provides certain things.
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they do not single out suspect classifications and must be upheld to the legitimate state interests. she says this does not interfere with the fundamental rights which we believe, i believe every american under the second amendment of the constitution has a fundamental right to bear arms. >> [unintelligible] >> you are right that this is about incorporation. all of the bill of rights have been incorporated under the 14th amendment of the constitution. she went out of her way to the nine the right to keeping
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bearing arms as it right. >> we do not think those are necessary to the opinion. it raises some questions that we are still willing to talk about. she can be asked about that. >> the democrats are going to try to take care of health care reform. how much aforetime wilt this nomination take in your opinion? >> i would say that the supreme court nomination is perceived as more important now than several years ago for a lot of reasons. i think you have a lot of senators who want to speak on it. i think the nominee deserves not just a dismissal of that holding and is holding but it will legal
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analysis. she will have to defend some critics of certain rulings . that will take some time. >> in the past it took the time that it took. a time limit was set that was not good in the past. we were not getting all of the documentation that we asked for. hopefully we will. it will be a day or so before the hearings.
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these are the type of things that cause a lot of banks on the committee. -- a lot of angst on the committee. i expect judge sotomayor to be treated with the same respect and care than a number of our nominations have for the supreme court in the past. nobody here has the desire to misuse the process. these are very important questions. i think a vast majority of the senate were really concerned.
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when they lie in the face of what we believe -- these are matters of great concern. i suspect that raising this in advance will be helpful. >> thank you. >> also yesterday, republican senator came to the senate floor to talk about the nomination of sotomayor. his remarks about 10 minutes. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] >> i would start by saying that any confirmation the senate considers important but none more so than a lifetime appointment for the most
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distinguished judicial office in our nation. the president has nominated judge sotomayor. it is the senate's job to give . constitution convention, senators -- and i quote -- "cannot themselves choose, they can only ratify or reject the choice of the president." i take this role very seriously as do all of my other colleagues. one of our colleagues in the senate at the time gave the following views on a then a pending supreme court nomination. i want to tell you what he said. he said there aren't some who believe that the president should have complete authority to appoint his nominee and the senate should only see if the nominee is an all-around good person. there should be no further
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question as to whether the judge should be confirmed. i disagree with you. i agree for early -- firmly that the constitution confirms fort examination of the judge's philosophy, ideology, and record. the senator who made those remarks was then a senator obama. he spoke those words in january 2006 on this floor when the senate was debating the confirmation of justice alito. it is our duty to thoroughly review all of the nominees. this review should be thorough and fair. it should cover various backgrounds and judicial records.
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the senate must also work to ensure that the nominee will decide cases based upon the bedrock will law as opposed to their own personal feelings and political views. part of this confirmation process, i have the opportunity to meet with judge sotomayor. i agree that she has an impressive background as well as a compelling personal story. what we have to do is look at the record. when it comes to understanding the constitution, as it relates to the second amendment to bear arms, that is an area where i have significant concern. ossining on the second quarter of appears -- appeals, she has a narrow view of the second amendment.
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she has little explanation or reason. for example, she has ruled twice that the second amendment is not a fundamental right. the first time she did so was in a footnote. it was stated as fact without any explanation more recently or reasoning being provided. her views on whether people have the right to bear arms -- it is a fundamental right. it is very important. the state and local governments has the right to practice this amendment. the circuit court of appeals is split on this issue.
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what is troubling to me and that these second amendment cases point out a trend that legal experts have expressed about judge sotomayor. she has a record of casually dismissing difficult and important constitutional issues. it does not take an attorney to notice that heard discussion on this issue consists of just a few paragraphs. opinions for both the ninth circuit and the seventh circuit discuss the issue at length. i understand that writing styles do very. even in the riding of judicial opinions, i am still concerned about her reasoning in her decision. another example of her opinion that appears to be unnecessarily
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short and inadequately recent is one case known as the new haven firefighters promotion case. they published an unusually short an unsigned opinion that adopted the lower court's ruling without adding any original analysis. one of her old mentor's commented that her opinion contains no reference to the constitutional claim at the core of this case. the disposition of the case is uneasy with the weighty issues that are presented by this appeal. without careful reasoning being provided, critics and supporters alike have been left to wonder on what basis these decisions
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have been made. i am left with concern about these rulings and whether that they are based on personal views and feelings rather than rules of law. during my short meeting with the judge this morning, it did not provide either of us enough time to address these issues. that is why i will be monitoring closely the confirmation hearings that are set to occur next month. during those hearings, i hope we will take the necessary time to explore and thoroughly examine her positions in legal reasoning, especially on the second amendment in greater detail. like many of my colleagues, i am ages to see this process move forward. we also understand the constitutional role of the
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senate when it comes to providing consent. when you consider a lifetime appointment to the highest court in the land, you must make sure that you do your homework and you thoroughly and completely examine the record. as of the judiciary committee will conduct this in a way that is consistent with the tone that is appropriate and needs to be thorough. we are talking about a lifetime appointment to the supreme court. whoever ends up on that court is going to be faced with great issues. they have consequences which are lasting to this great republic. it is important that we have judges who are put in the supreme court who understand the role of the judiciary in our democracy. it is to be the referee and the umpire who applies the loss of
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this land fairly with the facts in front of them. i hope we will review the record more thoroughly of this nominee. i hope we will take seriously that was possibility. that would be the criteria by which i would work as a nominee. i want to see if she exercises appropriate level of judicial restraint. i hope she is someone who is committed to that fundamental principle of judicial restraint which i think is a hallmark of our democracy. i yield the floor at this time. >> as this year's supreme court term comes to an end, here chief
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justice roberts talk about how the court works. there'll be other guests to discuss the decisions handed down this past year period of coverage on c-span saturday morning at 9 eastern. >> july 4 weekend on "book tv." discover a new side of our first president. the essence of george washington will be discussed. join our conversation sunday july 5 live on c-span2. >> supporters of judge sotomayor discussed her supreme court nomination on the senate floor. we will hear from a couple of senators. this is 40 minutes. be vitiated. i ask unanimous consent the call of the quorum be vitiated. the presiding officer: without objection, so ordered. ms. klobuchar: mr. president, i'll be joined on the floor today by some of my fellow women senators to talk about the
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president's nominee for the supreme court. i will note that some of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle came to the floor yesterday to, as one news report described it "kickoff their campaign" against her. so we want to take this opportunity to get the facts out, to correct any miscon exceptions, the supreme court confirmation hearings for judge sotomayor will begin on july 13. my consideration of her will not begin then. i began considering her the day she was announced, because of my membership on the judiciary committee, i wanted to learn as much as i can about this nominee. even though there are many questions that will be asked and many areas that we will want to focus on, i'd like to speak
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today about how judge solomon your appears to me at based on my initial review. after meeting with her and learning about her, i am very positive about the nomination. she knows the constitution. she knows the law. she also knows america. i know americans have heard a lot of things about her background, her long career. it is really important for us to talk about how she is a solid nominee. there have been statements made outside this chamber -- some misstatements. when i was in the airport in minnesota, a guy came up to me and said, do you know how you are voting on that woman? i said i will see how she answers some of the questions.
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he said he was worried. i said why are you worried? she is always put in her emotions in front of the law. >i talked about how they have hr and other judges together and 95% of the time she comes to an agreement with the republican appointed judge of the panel. you must be thinking the same thing about those guys. that incident made me think that we really need to set the record straight about the fax. -- facts. we need to get straight what kind of judge we are looking at. she needs to get the same simple, fair treatment the other nominees have been given. her story is a classic american story.
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it is about what is possible in our country through hard work. she grew up in a modest circumstances, and she worked hard for every single thing she got. many of you know her story. her dad died when she was 9 years old, and among supported her and her brother by yourself. her mom was devoted to her children's education. her mom was so devoted to her education and her brothers education that she save every penny she could so she could buy encyclopedia britannica for her children. this meant a lot to me. i remember seeing them in the hallway growing up. i now show my daughter the encyclopedias. she is not very interested in them. they met a lot to my family and meant a lot to the judge. she graduated from princeton
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semanko mulally -- summa cum laude and hi nbbetta kappa. some question if she is smart enough. you cannot make up that you have these high awards. it is a fact that she is a phi betta kappa. she has a very interesting legal career. she has worked in the private sector as a civil litigator. she has been an appellate court judge. the one experience of hers that resonates for me is that immediately graduating from law school, she spent five years as a prosecutor during one of the
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most busiest offices in our country. at the time, it paid about half as much as the job in the private sector. she wanted a challenge. she took the job as a prosecutor. before i entered the senate, i was a prosecutor. it was in minnesota. i was very interested in this experience that we have in common. one of the things i learned and i know she understands is that as a prosecutor, the law is not some dusty but in your basement. you have seen the damage that crime has done to the community and the havoc it can wreak. yet interacted with the people going to prison. you know that law is not just an
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abstract subject. you see that the law has a real impact on real people. as a prosecutor, you have to know the law and people. you have to no human nature. the former supervisor of her says she was a commanding figure in the courtroom. she would weave together a complex set of facts and never lose sight of who she was fighting for. she was fighting for the people in those neighborhoods. she was fighting for the victims of crimes. her experience as a prosecutor tells me that she meets one of my criteria for supreme court nominee. i am looking for someone who deeply appreciates the power and impact the loss have and that the criminal justice system has in the lives of people.
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she learned that the law is not just an extraction. in addition to her work as a prosecutor, i have learned a lot about her from her long record as a judge. she has been a judge for 17 years, 11 years as an appellate judge and the six years as a trial judge. president george h. w. bush gave her the first job she had as a federal judge. she was nominated by a republican president. the job was to be a district judge in the southern district of new york. her nomination was enthusiastically supported by both new york's senators, democratic senator and the republican senator. if you watch tv or the newspapers, you know that this judge has been called names by
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many people. in most cases, these commentators have read a case or two of hers. the may have taken a sentence of of context. they have made a sweeping judgments about her judicial fed is based on a few words that have been taken out of context. and nominee's professional record is fair game to consider. we are obligated to determine whether to confirm someone to a very important position with lifetime tenure. it is the constitutional duty that i take very seriously. when people get upset about a few items that a judge has given, or a few statements that someone has made in public, do those trouble 17 years of good
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judicial decision making? i do nothing so. if we want to know what kind of a justice she will be, is not our best evidence to look at the type of judge she has already been? she presided over 450 cases. she has participated in more than 3000 panel decisions. she has authored more than 200 appellate opinions. she has set on a three judge panel with a republican appellate judge wooshy agrees 95% of the time. there are five cases where she authored the decision -- the best majority of cases have not been overturned or reversed by a higher court. it is worth noting that this
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nominee if confirmed would bring more judicial experience to the supreme court than any justice in 100 years. with that, my colleagues are here. we will have a number of women senators here. i will come back and finish my remarks. i thought it was very important that one senator from new hampshire be able to say a few words about the nominee. thank you very much, mr. president. i yield the floor. mrs. shaheen: mr. president? the presiding officer: the senator from new hampshire. mrs. shaheen: mr. president, i'm delighted to be here this afternoon to join my friend and colleague from the state of minnesota, senator klobuchar, in supporting the nomination of
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justice sonia sotomayor to be a justice of the supreme court. you know, everyone in my home state of new hampshire was very proud 19 years ago when the former president bush nominated judge solomon your to the federal court position. -- judge silberman yousonia sote federal court position. i believe the president has made a thoughtful and outstanding choice in nominating judge sonia sotomayor. she has had a distingui


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