July 27, 2009

Crapo To Vote Against Sotomayor

Cites concerns over judicial activism, 2nd Amendment, foreign law

Washington, DC - Idaho Senator Mike Crapo released the following statement regarding his decision to vote against Supreme Court nominee of Sonia Sotomayor:

"Judge Sotomayor has distinguished herself throughout her career, serving as a strong role model for many as she has excelled in her chosen field. She has demonstrated one of the greatest things about America-the opportunity to become whatever you want with your God-given abilities. I enjoyed my meeting with her and found her to be a personable individual.

"However, after having studied her positions and taken careful consideration through the Senate Judiciary Committee hearings earlier this month, I have concluded that I cannot vote to confirm her to a lifetime appointment on the U.S. Supreme Court. Her testimony was evasive and lacked substance; in some circumstances, it was misleading and even contradictory to her own previous statements and writings.

"Most particularly, I found a number of her rulings and writings to be of great concern. First, she rejects that all Americans have an individual 2nd Amendment right to keep and bear arms. In the Maloney case, she wrote that the right to bear arms is in fact not a "fundamental" right. If confirmed, she may very well be on the Court to hear that very case. Even the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which has jurisdiction over Idaho, has ruled the opposite way in a similar case--that the 2nd Amendment is binding on the states. Should Judge Sotomayor's position in Maloney be upheld by the Supreme Court, Idahoans would lose their 2nd Amendment protection against state gun control laws.

"Also troubling is that she has made statements acknowledging that her experience allows her to choose the facts she wants to see when determining a case, rather than applying the law. And she has repeatedly stated that U.S. judges may look to foreign law to interpret the U.S. Constitution and the laws of the United States to maintain our country's standing in the world community. The U.S. Supreme Court has directly reviewed ten of Judge Sotomayor's decisions, and eight of those have been reversed or vacated. Most recently, the Court reversed a decision noted in an unsigned and unpublished opinion without any analysis regarding Ricci v. DeStefano, commonly called the New Haven firefighters case.

"I take this responsibility of confirming Supreme Court judges very seriously, and took every opportunity to learn more about Judge Sotomayor. This was not a decision that I reached lightly. The oath taken by federal judges says, in part, that they promise or swear to do justice for all. As I see it, that correctly describes the fundamental and proper role for a judge. Given the review I have made of Judge Sotomayor, I question whether she would or could abide by that standard and must vote against her nomination to sit on the highest court in our country."