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Hearings Aren't Helping Sotomayor

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Jon Kyl. I'm given to understand here from my buddy Andy McCarthy at National Review, via Jennifer Rubin who's writing about this on Commentary at their Contentions blog, that Jon Kyl is just tying Sotomayor up in knots this morning. Did you watch a little bit of it, Snerdley? I didn't. As I said yesterday, the voice, the whole thing, I... (sigh) So I'm relying on others to tell me what happened, and this is apparently pretty good. He was really zeroing in on Ricci. You know, she said that she was relying on precedent, and Kyl said, "What precedent? What's the precedent? Why not vote for an en banc review?" meaning all judges on the Second Circuit.

And she supposedly muddled that answer as well as she muddled the answer about precedent. So Kyl apparently scored some pretty big points. I want to play four sound bites for you here of Sonia Sotomayor from several times in her career and show how she butchers the English language, which is fine and dandy. We all butcher the English language, but were it not for I or not for me pointing it out you wouldn't know about it. A Republican nominee doing this kind of thing, it would be laughed about all over the media. They'd be talking about how this guy's not smart enough, he's gotta go, if it were George W. Bush. Here's the first example. This is from oral arguments December 10th, 2007, in the Ricci v. DeStefano case. That's the firefighter case.

SOTOMAYOR: This first seven who are gonna be hired, only because of the (pause) uh, vagrancies (sic) of the vacancies at that moment.

RUSH: She meant to say "vagaries" but she said "vagrancies." In fact, that whole clip... We don't have it but there's a clip, this audio, from which we culled this is Sotomayor interrupting the lawyers for the firefighters. The lawyers for the firefighters are making a brilliant case as to why only qualified people should be hired. And she makes it very clear that she's not concerned about any of that; she's only concerned about race being accounted for by coming up with a test where minorities have a better chance to pass it. So, "This first seven who are going to be hired only because of the vagrancies of the vacancies..." She meant vagaries. Here's the next example.

SOTOMAYOR: Under New York, law if you are being threatened with eminent (sic) death or very serious injury --

RUSH: It is not "eminent." It is "imminent," with an "I" in front of it. Here's the next one.

SOTOMAYOR: -- is educate themselves. They build up a story (sic) of knowledge about legal thinking.

RUSH: It's a "store" of knowledge you build up. Now, remember, we're told, "This woman, she worked hard. This woman is brilliant! This woman is fabulous." These are... (sigh) (drumming fingers) You don't find too many learned people making these kinds of vocabulary mistakes. "Vagrancies" for vagaries, "eminent" for imminent, "a story of knowledge" "for store of knowledge." And here's the last one.

SOTOMAYOR: All questions of policy are within the providence (sic) of Congress first.

RUSH: Province. It is "province" of Congress, not providence. Providence is a city in Rhode Island. Providence is also a record. Say you're a wine collector, and you have some old classics, and you want to sell 'em. You've got to be able to prove the providence. You've got to be able to prove they're real. How you got them, where they've been how they've been stored that's the providence of something. The providence... Questions of policy are the province, the right of Congress. So there she is, Judge Sonia Sotomayor. Oh, and you gotta hear this, too. Yesterday I made a point that it sure seems to me like she knows the answers to the Democrat questions on the committee. 'Cause when the Democrats start asking a question, she is right in there with the onomatopoeia. She just doesn't hesitate. There's no hesitation whatsoever. She's just in there. When the Republicans ask her questions it's a bunch of hem-hawing around like Kyl this morning. It's a bunch of hem-hawing around and writing on her notepad and trying to figure out what to do. Yesterday she got a question from Senator Al Franken on Perry Mason. Al Franken asked a judicial Supreme Court nominee about Perry Mason. Here was the exchange.

FRANKEN: We're going to have round two so I'll ask you some more questions there. What was the one case in Perry Mason, that, uhh --

SOTOMAYOR: There, I -- I wish --

FRANKEN: -- Burger won.

SOTOMAYOR: -- I remembered the name of the episode, but I don't.

RUSH: Stop the tape! She knew that was coming! Recue that. She knew this was coming. How in the world...? If I'm a Supreme Court nominee and some clown senator asks me about this, the last thing I'm going to do to prep for my hearing and confirmation to US Supreme Court is be prepared to a question about Perry Mason, a TV series back in the '50s. Don't get me wrong, I love the show. Every Saturday night my mom and dad, steak and baked potatoes out there we'd watch it. My dad was a famous lawyer in his own right we watched it. I loved the show. I've got all the DVDs they've released. Sometimes I'll spend some nostalgia time and watch it, but if I'm nominated for any position on any federal court -- all the way up to the Supreme Court -- the last thing I'm going to do is bone up on Perry Mason episodes. This woman sounds boned-up on Perry Mason! She had to know this question is coming. She starts answering it before Franken even finishes it. Listen to it.

FRANKEN: We're going to have round two so I'll ask you some more questions there. What was the one case in Perry Mason, that, uhh --

SOTOMAYOR: There, I -- I wish --

FRANKEN: -- Burger won.

SOTOMAYOR: -- I remembered the name of the episode, but I don't. I just was always struck that there was only one case where his client was actually guilty.

FRANKEN: And you don't remember that case?

SOTOMAYOR: I know that I should remember the name of it but I haven't looked at the episode.

FRANKEN: Didn't the White House prepare you for...

AUDIENCE: (laughter)

FRANKEN: For that?

RUSH: Perry Mason lost one case. Now, Sotomayor apparently has told somebody that that TV show was part of the mix that inspired her to want to go into law. The fact is Perry Mason was a defense lawyer. She went into law as the prosecutor and then as a judge. Why would she emulate...? I mean, the prosecutor in the Perry Mason series was Hamilton Burger, one of the biggest klutzes in the history of television mysteries. Why would...? He never won a case. His name was Ham Burger, Hamilton Burger. Why in the world would you want to emulate a guy who never won a case? Why in the world would you bone up on Perry Mason? She knows. She knows the question is coming from the Democrats, even from that clown Senator Franken, who stole a Senate seat.

It's amazing. It's a great country. They recount the votes in Iran (snorts) in a conflict over there, and Ahmadinejad gets more votes than he had in the original vote. Why, just like in this country! Franken's 250 votes short and by the time they finished, he's 250 votes long. Now, the State-Run Media is very upset. They think that Lindsey Grahamnesty has become a puppet of me. This, I think, is a great object lesson for Senator Graham. Senator Graham has spent a lot of his time, since he joined forces with Senator McCain, trying to curry favor with the liberals and the media by disagreeing with us in his own party -- and bashing us, distancing himself from us -- and after all of that they still call him a puppet of Rush Limbaugh. This is last night, Campbell Brown on CNN. She's talking to Sam Seder. (I don't know how to pronounce his name.) "Lindsey Graham is challenging the judge on her reputation among lawyers as a tough questioner. What's going on here?"

SEDER: Well, Lindsey Graham is saying here is he's basically saying, "I want to apologize to Rush Limbaugh for treating you so fairly, uh, yesterday and hope that, uh, the way I'm questioning you -- you now will, uh, put me back in his good graces and so I think --

BROWN: (giggling)

SEDER: He -- Uh, that his hope, anyway.

RUSH: So after all this -- Lindsey Graham joining forces with McCain and trying to curry favor with the State-Run Media -- and all he does is he asked her one really good question: "Ma'am, you know, I couldn't say what you said and be sitting where you are." So now all of a sudden he's out there trying to apologize to me for going soft the first day, trying to curry favor. I'm sorry, Senator Graham. I didn't mean to do this to you, but after all these years of trying to curry favor with these people... I think the liberals saying that he is a slave to me seems to maybe have gotten to Senator Graham a little bit. This is this morning in Washington, Senate Judiciary Committee hearing during his questioning. Graham had this exchange with Judge Sotomayor.

GRAHAM: You have come a long way. You have worked very hard. You have earned the respect of Ken Starr -- and I would like to put his statement in the record -- and you have said some things that just bug the hell out of me.

SOTOMAYOR: May I --

GRAHAM: Last question on the "wise Latino woman" comment. To those who may be bothered by that, what do you say?

SOTOMAYOR: I regret that I have offended some people. I believe that my life demonstrates that that was not my intent, to leave the impression that some have taken from my words.

GRAHAM: You know what, Judge? I agree with you. Good luck.

RUSH: Well, I don't think Lindsey Graham is trying to curry favor with me here. (laughing) She said that phrase four or five times over a period of as many years in various speeches. It's not subject to misinterpretation. It's who she is. I gotta take a break, but we've got the audio sound bites, a couple audio sound bites of unhappy leftist legal beagles with Sotomayor's unwillingness to come forth and be an honest commie babe.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: We chronicled earlier this morning -- well, earlier today, depending where you are -- Justice Sotomayor's butchering of the English language, which is important 'cause she's a judge about to sit on the Supreme Court. Among the things that we highlighted: "The first seven who are going to be hired only because of the vacancies of that moment," she meant to say vagaries. "Under New York law, if you're being threatened with eminent death or very serious injury." Imminent is what she meant, with an I, not an E. "Educate themselves, they build up a story of knowledge about legal things." Store of knowledge, not story. And she said, "All questions of policy are within the providence of Congress." No, province of Congress. And the latest, in a conversation with Senator Chuck-U Schumer, "I want to talk to you, ask you about the 1995 player strike case, which comes up, it is an interesting case for everybody," da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da, "could you tell us a little bit about the case, why you listed it in your questionnaire you filled out as one of your ten most important cases, and that will be my last question."

And she says, "People often forget how important some legal challenges seem before judges decide the case. Before the case was decided all the academics, all the newspapers and others talking about the case were talking about the novel theory the baseball owners had developed in challenging the collective bargaining rights players and owners." So that's the context. She said, "And it becomes clear to me after looking at that case that that process led to affirming the decision of the National Labor Relationships Board, that it could and should issue an injunction on the grounds of the claim." It's the National Labor Relations Board, not the National Labor Relationships Board. (interruption) What did I say, providence? Provenance. I said what? Providence, whatever. Yeah. I got it right. You're confusing me here with all these notes. Here I am in a very detailed, proper discussion on how Sotomayor can't speak and I'm getting notes from my own staff saying you can't, either, essentially, and I'm sitting here laughing about it.

What is it, National Labor Relationships Board? It is The Oprah show. What is it, a chic thing, I mean, this is not insignificant stuff, if you ask me, any Republican nominee butchering the language like this would be disqualified and it would be all over the headlines and they would be investigating the educational history of the nominee. I mentioned earlier today also that Jon Kyl really scored some points on the Ricci case. Here is the audio on that. We got three bites. Kyl said, "There was no Supreme Court precedent that required your result in Ricci." She cited precedent. There wasn't any precedent and finally Kyl said so. "And I'm not sure what the Second Circuit precedent is. The Supreme Court said few, if any, and I don't know what the precedent would be, I mean I'm not necessarily gonna ask you to cite the case, but was there a case, and, if so, what is it?"

SOTOMAYOR: It was the ones that we discussed yesterday, the bushy line of cases that talked about the prima facie case and the obligations of the city in terms of defending lawsuits claiming disparate impact. And so, the question then became how do you view the city's action. Was it a -- and that's what the district court had done in its 78-page opinion to say you've got a city facing liability.

RUSH: Well, I mean that's mumbo jumbo gobbledygook. There is no precedent. And don't tell me I said "president," Dawn, there is no precedent in this case. He nailed her on it. Now he zeros in on the en banc review.

KYL: So you contend that there was Second Circuit precedent. Now, on the en banc review, of course, the question there is different because you're not bound by any three-judge panel decision in your circuit. So what precedent would have bound -- and yet, you took the same position in the en banc review. And in that case, of course, they're not bound by a three-judge decision because it's the entire circuit sitting of 10 or 12 or 20 judges. So what precedent then would have bound the court in the en banc review?

RUSH: You listen and see if she has an answer.

SOTOMAYOR: The panel acted in accordance with its views by setting forth and incorporating the district court's analysis of the case. Those who disagreed with the opinion made their arguments. Those who agreed that en banc certification wasn't necessary voted their way and the majority of the court decided not to hear the case en banc.

RUSH: The question was about precedent. My dad was a lawyer, I know this stuff, she didn't answer it. Now, let's move on, ladies and gentlemen, to liberals unhappy with Sotomayor hiding who she really is. Last night on PMSNBC, Dahlia Lithwick was the guest. And she was asked this question: "You've raised the issue of the Democrats' lost opportunity here. You said at Slate.com today that you learned more about liberal theories on jurisprudence from Democrats' opposition to Roberts and Alito than you could glean from the way they're supporting Sotomayor. What do you mean by that?"

LITHWICK: All they needed to do for three days was just wind up and explain what's wrong with the John Roberts court, why does the Roberts court have this determination to keep Americans, average Americans, out of the courthouse doors? Why are they so set on doing away with the racial progress we've made? Nobody makes that point. Instead we have at least half the Democrats on the committee racing into the embrace of John Roberts, you know, promising us that Sotomayor is going to be tough on crime, loves guns, is a strict constructionist, is a minimalist. It's just bizarre the extent to which John Roberts' shadow hovers over these hearings. And Democrats, it's like Patti Hearst syndrome. They completely bought into the notion that, you know, justices call balls and strikes; anything over and above that is horrible.

RUSH: Now, you see, this is fascinating stuff here, because the liberals are winning everything. They're getting everything they want. They're gonna get Sotomayor, all things considered. The Republicans don't have the votes to stop anything Obama wants to do. And here comes this Lithwick babe just bent all out of shape because they're not on the warpath against the Roberts court. She's upset in order for this confirmation to go smoothly Sotomayor has to lie about who she is. She has to stay in the closet. Exactly right. Sotomayor cannot come out. She cannot come out of the closet. She has to pretend that she's not a liberal and it's upsetting these liberals out there. They still think they're losing. It's fascinating to listen to these people because normally they're all about doing whatever you have to do to win: lie, cheat, ACORN, whatever you have to do to win. This Lithwick babe is not happy with the way they're winning. She wants Roberts impeached or destroyed. Here's another one. This is last night on CNN, Campbell Brown talking to a contributing editor Cathy Areu from the Washington Post. The question: "If she weren't sitting before this committee right now with so much at stake would she really be backing off that statement?"

AREU: Nooo. As a wise Latina I can tell you, no, she's not backing down and she probably would want to say, "Not only do I mean a wise Latina, I meant any Latina could make a better decision than a white man could."

RUSH: Now, this is a Washington Post reporterette, an infobabe, so put this now in order. Sotomayor has told everybody that Sandra Day O'Connor didn't mean what she said and now a Washington Post reporter, Cathy Areu, says Sotomayor didn't mean what she said. Here, play this again. This is a woman who knows what Sotomayor is hiding and is upset she's hiding it. Listen again.

AREU: Nooo. As a wise Latina I can tell you, no, she's not backing down and she probably would want to say, "Not only do I mean a wise Latina, I meant any Latina could make a better decision than a white man could."

RUSH: As though that's okay, as though that's right, as though it's correct. That's what Sotomayor wants to say. Now, it's actually what these people want her to say because they know what she meant. That's what Sotomayor meant. They're right, by the way. These critics of Sotomayor are right. She said the wise Latina comment at least six times, my good friends, in speeches and comments over the course of many years. This is eye-opening in so many ways. A Washington Post reporter, "I'm going to tell you what she really feels, I'm going to tell you what she really thinks, I'm going to tell you what she really wanted to say." (laughing) So these liberals out there revising each other at every opportunity. As a wise Latina myself, let me tell you what I know she meant, as a wise Latina myself. Not only wise Latina, any Latina, an unwise Latina, stupid Latina would make a better decision than your average white guy. That's what the Washington Post babe said, and we played this because nobody, folks, is watching CNN in primetime. I mean, you could put their audience in a thimble. We're airing this for you so that you know about it.

END TRANSCRIPT

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