Barack Obama’s nomination of Sonia Sotomayor to fill the forthcoming vacancy on the Supreme Court could revive a quarrel about racial politics that once bitterly divided the country. Contrary to what you might think, this would be a good thing. It is time to revisit that quarrel, in a calmer and more enlightened frame of mind, and change the law.
Ms Sotomayor, by the way, is an outstanding nominee. Her personal history is textbook American dream – daughter of an immigrant factory worker, a child of the Bronx housing projects, educated at Princeton (summa cum laude) and Yale (editor of the Law Journal), and an eminent career in the law to follow. As the president pointed out, her legal experience matches or betters that of the other Supreme Court justices when they were nominees.
Her record is so impressive that it is inhibiting Republicans opposed to her nomination. And it should inhibit them, for heaven’s sake. It would be a scandal if this remarkable and impeccably well-qualified candidate were barred, when her judicial views are by no means immoderate or out of the liberal mainstream.
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