3 GOP senators come out against Sotomayor

Sonia Sotomayor is still expected to be confirmed. Sonia Sotomayor is still expected to be confirmed.
Associated Press / July 28, 2009

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WASHINGTON - On the eve of their panel’s vote today, top Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee announced yesterday that they would oppose Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, joining a growing list of conservatives ready to vote against the judge who is virtually certain to become the first Hispanic justice.

Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama, the committee’s top Republican, and Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, its second-ranking member, both said that Sotomayor left them doubting her pledge of “fidelity to the law,’’ and wondering whether she would let personal biases and prejudices interfere with her rulings.

Just one Republican on the committee, Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, has said he will vote to confirm President Obama’s first nominee to the high court.

“Her experience, however well-rounded, and background, however inspirational, is not enough,’’ Sessions said in a speech on the Senate floor.

Grassley said he still feels burned by his support for Justice David Souter, whom Sotomayor would replace if confirmed and who turned out to be more liberal than former President George H.W. Bush expected.

Senator Mike Johanns, a Nebraska Republican, also announced yesterday he would vote against Sotomayor.