Judge Sotomayor's Confirmation is a Victory for the Country and the High Court

Judge Sotomayor becomes the first Hispanic to serve on the Supreme Court

August 6, 2009

WASHINGTON D.C. – Today, Judge Sonia Sotomayor was confirmed by a vote of 68 to 31 in the U.S. Senate to serve as the first Hispanic Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. The Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), the nation’s leading Latino civil rights organization, joins millions around the country in celebrating Sotomayor’s confirmation by the Senate.

Incoming MALDEF President and General Counsel Thomas A. Saenz stated, “Justice Sotomayor’s eminent qualifications and wise committee testimony shattered a glass ceiling today. This tremendous accomplishment is only marred by the fact that so many senators chose to elevate partisanship and political pandering over principle by voting against her confirmation. History – and the fast-growing community of Latino voters – will judge these senators harshly.”

The recent confirmation hearings underscored that Judge Sotomayor is known to closely study the facts of each case, apply legal theories through careful and considered deliberation and issue even-handed rulings. Sotomayor’s 17-year judicial record and Senate testimony demonstrate an unwavering dedication to these principles. Unsurprisingly, her nomination garnered unyielding and widespread support from law enforcement groups, lawyers, jurists and academia.

“It is with great pride and admiration that MALDEF and the Hispanic community welcomes the confirmation of the first Hispanic to serve on the Supreme Court. She is a champion of the ideals to which we all can aspire, namely a strong work ethic and a commitment to public service,” stated Claudine Karasik, MALDEF Legislative Staff Attorney.

Over the years, it has become increasingly important for our courts to reflect the growing Latino presence in this country. MALDEF thanks President Obama and the members of the U.S. Senate for their leadership in choosing a highly qualified and dedicated public servant to serve our country. Judge Sotomayor’s confirmation reflects the commitment of our nation’s leaders to promote the legitimacy of the judicial system and secure our community’s trust and confidence in the courts.

For all media inquiries, please contact Laura Rodriguez.

Copyright 2009 MALDEF — Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund