President Barack Obama has chosen Puerto Rican Judge Sonia Sotomayor as his pick for the Supreme Court seat being vacated by Justice David Souter. The President is making his announcement this morning, but finalized his decision over the weekend while at Camp David and alerted White House officials.
Sotomayor will be the first Hispanic, and only the third woman, to become a U.S. Supreme Court justice if she is successfully confirmed.
Sotomayor has long been named as a favorite of President Obama's to fill Justice Souter's seat ever since the judge announced he would step down when the court's current session ends this summer. But her appointment has not come without controversy, mainly for voicing her beliefs that one's life experiences should come into play when making judicial decisions.
White House officials said of President Obama's pick, "She was nominated by George Bush —then Bill Clinton—and has more judicial experience than anyone sitting on the court had at the time they were nominated." Most importantly, Obama agrees with Sotomayor on the fact that a judge's life experiences are a key part of their legal makeup, and what a remarkable set of life experiences Sotomayor is bringing to the table.
Born and raised in the Bronx, Sotomayor was a product of the public housing system of NYC and went on to earn full scholarships to Princeton University and Yale 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," Sonia Sotamayor once said during a 2002 lecture she gave.We couldn't agree more.
Latina Magazine Editor-in-Chief Mimi Valdes Ryan says, "The appointment of Judge Sotomayor to the Supreme Court is a watershed moment
in our nation’s history. For Latinas of all ages, this is proof that a woman of
color can reach a level of success beyond her dreams. The significance of this
moment will be felt from the housing projects of New York City to the suburbs of
Dallas for generations to come."