Read the complete transcript (Face the Nation, 7-12-09) of Senator Sessions', while appearing on Face The Nation (7-12-09), critique of Judge Sonia Sotomayor. He somehow suggests her views are un-American and that she wouldn't be a fair judge while on the Supreme Court in confirmed:
SCHIEFFER: All right. Well, let’s turn to the hearings that open tomorrow on the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor. She has visited now with over 89 senators over these past weeks. There is also an overwhelming Democratic majority. And there’s an overwhelming Democratic majority on the committee that you chair, Senator Leahy.
Some people are saying it’s already a done deal. That she’s going to be confirmed and that’s there’s nothing Senator Sessions and other -- and the Republicans can do about it. Is she going to be confirmed?
LEAHY: I suspect she will be confirmed. But you know, I would hope that it does not turn into a partisan fight for the good of the courts and for the good of the Supreme Court. Now Chief Justice Roberts is not somebody I would have recommended as a nominee to President Obama. But I voted for him when he was nominated by President Bush because I felt chief justice of the United States should not be on a party-line vote.
I just want to read something about -- there’s a profile today of Judge Sotomayor. Says she was inspired by the ideal of neutrality. She said: “I’m not going to be playing for the Hispanic team, the Democratic team, the Republican team. I’m going to be playing for the Constitution team.”
I don’t know what more you could ask of a judge. And here is...
LEAHY: And here she is, she has been a judge longer than anybody who has gone on the Supreme Court in almost 100 years.
SCHIEFFER: Well, let’s ask Senator Sessions. What more can you ask?
SESSIONS: Well, I wish she had been saying that in her speeches over the last 10 years than what she has been saying. It’s absolutely critical that whoever sits on the bench -- and no one should sit on the federal bench who is not committed to the principles of the oath, which is that you should be impartial and do equal justice to the rich and poor alike, and not respect persons but do justice every day.
And in her -- a number of her speeches, for example, she has advocated a view that suggests that your personal experiences, even prejudices -- she uses that word, it’s expected that they would influence a decision you make, which is a blow, I think, at the very ideal of American justice.
Every judge must be committed every day to not let their personal politics, their ethnic background, their biases, sympathies, influence the nature of their decision- making process. It’s the core of the American system.
LEAHY: Well, that’s...
SCHIEFFER: So would you oppose her because of that?
SESSIONS: Well, I think she’s going to have to answer that. Because this is a mature judicial philosophy that she has stated. She has criticized the idea that a woman and a man would reach the same result. She expects them to reach different results. I think that’s philosophically incompatible with the American system.
LEAHY: I totally disagree with that.
SESSIONS: Well, I’ve read her speeches in great depth. And I am convinced that’s what she said. And it wasn’t just the one line: a wise Latina will do a better job than a white male.
But what about her record?
LEAHY: That’s grasping at straws and I’ll tell you why. Here’s a woman who is a mainstream judge. She deserves respect as a judge. During her time actually for the days that she was a very tough prosecutor to her days as a trial judge to a court of appeals judge, that’s what we base it on. She has a track record. She has shown to be a mainstream judge. You don’t have to guess what kind of a judge she’s going to be.
I’ve asked her about her speeches. And she said ultimately and completely, the law controls. And as a judge, she’s shown over and over again that ultimately and completely, the law controls. We’ve had a lot of judicial nominees of both Republicans and Democrats talk about the background, how that has influenced them. Former President Bush talked about empathy when he nominated a Republican to the Supreme Court. You know, the fact is her answers are these. Ultimately and completely, the law controls. And she has the experience and the cases to be a mainstream judge. Anything else is nitpicking.