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After leaving the White House announcement Tuesday morning with President Barak Obama, NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous applauded the historic nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor, who would be the first Hispanic, and third woman, to serve on the Supreme Court.
"The nomination of the first Latina to join the Supreme Court is a moment that our nation should celebrate," Jealous said. "It brings us one step closer to the inclusive democracy that is the hallmark and promise of our great nation. Judge Sotomayor has the judicial track record, the intellectual fortitude, and the life experiences that will serve the Supreme Court and our nation well."
Said Jealous: "It is our hope that the Senate will not politicize such a crucially important choice, but make its decision expeditiously based on her unimpeachable record as an outstanding prosecutor, litigator, and trial and appellate judge. This is a valuable opportunity to show a reasoned non-partisan dialogue around a decision that brings excellence to our highest Court and will only move our nation forward."
She has been praised by both conservatives and liberal justices. Judge Richard C. Wesley, a George W. Bush appointee to the Second Circuit, said "Sonia is an outstanding colleague with a keen legal mind. She brings a wealth of knowledge and hard work to all her endeavors on our court. It is both a pleasure and an honor to serve with her.
"Judge Sotomayor is an outstanding legal choice, one of the most brilliant legal minds in our nation's judiciary," said Jealous. "She brings more federal judicial experience to the Supreme Court than any justice in 100 years, and more overall judicial experience than anyone confirmed for the Court in the past 70 years. She has been praised by both conservative and liberal justices for her impeccable credentials and outstanding grasp of the law. Her appointment by both Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton is consistent with her history of defying labels and rendering decisions without any partisan regard. Her powerful life story--from the public housing projects of the South Bronx to the halls of Princeton and Yale--allows her to understand the reality of all Americans from diverse backgrounds. We believe that Judge Sotomayor will faithfully uphold our constitution's commitment to civil liberties and civil rights, two crucial underpinnings of our democracy."
Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation's oldest and largest civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.