Sotomayor Nomination Heats Political Debate

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As Latinos from New York to California celebrate Sonia Sotomayor's nomination to the Supreme Court, Republican Senators plot their next move in an uphill battle.

But opponents may get some help making their case next month.
    
Many legal analysts predict the Supreme Court will overturn Sotomayor's ruling in a reverse discrimination employment case.
    
The high court already has overturned 60 percent of Sotomayor's rulings delivered on the second circuit court of appeals.

Click play for more with Charles Dunn of the Regent University School of Government, following John Jessup's report.
    
The 54-year-old judge's opponents are also honing in on a line from a speech she delivered at the University of California at Berkeley Law School.

"I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life," Sotomayor said in the speech.

Former speaker of the house Newt Gingrich responded on his blog.

"Imagine a judicial nominee said 'My experience as a white man makes me better than a Latina woman.' Wouldn't they have to withdraw? New racism is no better than old racism," he wrote.

"I think the center-right coalition is very unified on this message of she's a judicial activist. Her words and her own published writings tell that story," Gary Marx executive director of The Judicial Confirmation Network said.

The debate has already moved onto the airwaves through dueling commercials.

Coalition for Constitutional Values TV ad: "I will seek somebody who is dedicated to the rule of law, who shares my respect of the Constitutional values."

Opponents say they are prepared to use every tool in their arsenal to sway public opinion.
    
The Judicial Confirmation network ad: "Equal justice under law or under attack?"

The top Republican Senator on the judiciary committee says he does not foresee a filibuster to block Sotomayor's confirmation but lawmakers are preparing to scrutinize her record.

"It's going to take us some time to read her opinions and speeches and other writings to determine her qualifications," Sen. John Cornyn, R-TX, judiciary committee member said.

Republicans find themselves in a touchy political situation, desperate to bring more Americans into their fold. They want to be seen as treating Sotomayor fairly to avoid alienating hispanic voters. 

President Obama is pushing to have her confirmed by the end of the summer.

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