Posted by: rotenochsen | May 27, 2009


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

MSNBC story line this morning was about president Obamas’ pick for the Supreme Court . Yesterday Obama announced that he had selected Sonia Sotomayor to replace retiring Justice Stevens.
The piece began with this direct quote: “President Obama nominated federal judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court yesterday, putting her in line to become the nation’s first Hispanic justice and creating a difficult political equation for Republicans as they weigh how aggressively to fight her appointment.

An all-out assault on Sotomayor by Republicans could alienate both Latino and women voters, deepening the GOP’s problems after consecutive electoral setbacks”.

“Critics targeted her support for affirmative action, with Rush Limbaugh calling her a “reverse racist” in his syndicated radio program, citing a case in which she ruled against a group of white firefighters who claimed discrimination in hiring practices.

White House officials argued that the comments in the speeches were taken out of context, and they said that the firefighters case was an example of Sotomayor accepting established precedent, something they said conservatives should applaud. Senate Democrats, meanwhile, who are on the verge of controlling a filibuster-proof 60-vote majority in the Senate, warned Republicans of the dangers of pushing too hard against Obama’s first court pick.

Judicial precedent: A judgment of a court of law cited as an authority for deciding a similar set of facts; a case which serves as authority for the legal principle embodied in its decision. The common law has developed by broadening down from precedent to precedent”.

A judicial precedent is a decision of the court used as a source for future decision making. This is known as stare decisis (to stand upon decisions) and by which precedents are authoritative and binding and must be followed.

In giving judgment in a case, the judge will set out the facts of the case, state the law applicable to the facts and then provide his or her decision. It is only the ratio decidendi (the legal reasoning or ground for the judicial decision) which is binding on later courts under the system of judicial precedent

Judicial precedent is an important source of English law as an original precedent is one which creates and applies a new rule. However, the later decisions, especially of the higher courts, can have a number of effects upon precedents.. In particular, they may be:

* Reversed: where on appeal in the same case the decision is reversed, the initial decision will cease to have any effect
* Overruled: where in a later case a higher court decides that the first case was wrongly decided
* A refusal to follow: this arises where a court, not bound by the decision, cannot overrule it but does not wish to follow it so it simply refuses to follow the earlier decision
* Distinguished: where an earlier case is rejected as authority, either because the material facts differ or because the statement of law in the previous case is too narrow to be properly applied to the new set of facts
* Explained: a judge may seek to interpret an earlier decision before applying it or distinguishing it, thus the effect of the earlier case is varied in the circumstances of the present case. Source: Law

The Pew Research reported that in the 2008 presidential election 9% of those who voted were identified as Latino. Of this group, Hispanics voted for Democrats Barack Obama and Joe Biden over Republicans John McCain and Sarah Palin by a margin of more than two-to-one in the 2008 presidential election, 67% versus 31%,

Nationwide, the Latino vote was significantly more Democratic this year than in 2004, when President Bush captured an estimated 40% of the Hispanic vote, a modern high for a Republican presidential candidate. So you see the Latino vote is already decided just as is the Union vote–Democrat!!
Obama’s 67% share of the Latino vote in the 2008 general election represented a major reversal of fortunes for him since the Democratic primaries, when he lost the Latino vote to Sen. Hillary Clinton by a margin of nearly two-to-one4 . No other major demographic voting group in the country swung so heavily to Obama as Latinos did between the primaries and the general election this year. According to the 2008 National Survey of Latinos, conducted in June and July of this year, 75% of Latino registered voters who said they supported Clinton in the primaries switched their support to Obama. Source: Pew Hispanic Center Report

However, Politico reports that 96 percent of black voters supported Obama and constituted 13 percent of the electorate, a 2-percentage-point rise in their national turnout. As in past years, black women turned out at a higher rate than black men.Blacks do not necessarily like Hispanics as I experienced when the Cuban exodus brought thousands of Hispanics into South Florida in the 60’s and took away all the jobs in hotels and dining establishments that had been held by Blacks!

A stunning 54 percent of young white voters supported Obama, compared with 44 percent who went for McCain, the senator from Arizona. In the past three decades, no Democratic presidential nominee has won more than 45 percent of young whites.
So you can see the effect on the voters who are Hispanic if the Republicans grow a spine and object to Sotomayors confirmation will be negligible in the 2010 election. Latinos with the exception of Miami Cubans have seldom voted Republican, and the new generation of Cubans appears to have already switched to the Democrat side.

What should be the deciding issue in the vote to confirm Judge Sotomayor is will she follow the Constitution. It appears from her own statements that she will not! Obama picked her because he is convinced that she will vote as a minority who believes the Supreme Court can change the Constitution to accommodate those whom she believes the need the law be changed to accommodate their needs, as she did in the case of the reverse discrimination brought by the firemen who were more qualified( by test scores) but passed over for minority fireman that were promoted to satisfy the “PC” and affirmative action leftists. This was a Direct assault on the rule of law as we see Obama doing with his version of bankruptcy with Chrysler and soon GM. The ignoring of the primacy of bond holders to satisfy the UAW whom contributed over $50 million to the election of Democrats in the last election!

President Obama during his campaign described “identity politics” as “an enormous distraction,” Sotomayor has at times been blunt in her belief in the profound importance of racial identity.
Judge Sotomayor told a California audience in 2001 that “a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion” than a “white male” judge. I thought Justice was color blind!


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