Thursday, August 6, 2009
The Senate easily confirmed the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court. Only 31 Senators took seriously their oath to uphold the Constitution and voted against this radical anti-gun nominee, with 68 voting for confirmation.
All the Democrats in attendance voted for Sotomayor, while nine Republicans joined their ranks.
The Republican Senators who voted for Sotomayor were: Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Christopher Bond of Missouri, Judd Gregg of New Hampshire, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Richard G. Lugar of Indiana, Mel Martinez of Florida, George Voinovich of Ohio and Susan Collins and Olympia J. Snowe of Maine.
Many Democrat Senators campaigned on a pro-Second Amendment platform, yet voted to confirm a nominee who does not believe you have a fundamental right to self defense or an individual right to possess a firearm.
Placing the prerogatives of President Obama over their constitutional “Advice and Consent” duty, many so-called pro-gun Senators reneged on their promises to voters that they would support the individual right to keep and bear arms.
The common refrain heard in the Senate before the vote was: “The President deserves his pick.”
Of course, Senator Barrack Obama did not hold that view in 2006, when he opposed President Bush’s pick of Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court. Then-Senator Obama said:
There are some who believe that the President, having won the election, should have the complete authority to appoint his nominee, and the Senate should only examine whether or not the Justice is intellectually capable and an all-around nice guy. That once you get beyond intellect and personal character, there should be no further question whether the judge should be confirmed.
I disagree with this view. I believe firmly that the Constitution calls for the Senate to advise and consent. I believe that it calls for meaningful advice and consent that includes an examination of a judge's philosophy, ideology, and record.
Thankfully, we are seeing more and more Senators stand up to Obama’s radical agenda. You will remember that GOA encouraged you to lobby other gun groups so that gun owners across the country could speak with a unified voice in opposition to Judge Sotomayor.
We were hugely successful in this endeavor! News reports credit the gun lobby’s strong and unified opposition to Sotomayor as resulting in at least three NO votes from Senators who were previously undecided or in favor of the nominee. Even that figure is probably low, considering that 31 NO votes is a lot better than three NO votes (in the case of Justice Ginsburg) and nine NO votes (in the case of Justice Breyer).
One of the fence-sitting Senators who voted right today was Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah. For the first time in his 33 year Senate career, Hatch voted against a Supreme Court nomination. You may remember that Hatch even supported Obama’s pick for Attorney General and voted to end the filibuster on Harold Koh, the radical choice for the State Department counsel.
But faced with mounting pressure from grassroots in his state, Sen. Hatch broke with long-standing tradition regarding his support for Supreme Court nominations. Today, he voted against Judge Sotomayor.
“I feel very badly that I have to vote negatively -- it's not what I wanted to do when this process started -- but I believe that I'm doing the honorable and right thing," Sen. Hatch was quoted as saying in Newsday.
Thank you, everyone, for putting the heat on your Senators. President Obama would do well to interpret 31 NO votes as a “shot across the bow.” With his approval ratings plummeting, the president’s next Supreme Court pick may have to be far more in the mainstream.