Conservative Judicial Group Responds to Ads Backing Sotomayor

Posted May 27, 2009 at 5:03pm

Conservative judicial activists have gone up with a new Web video questioning the judicial philosophy of President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court pick, Sonia Sotomayor. The Judicial Confirmation Network put up its Web ad, aboutsoniasotomayor.com, in response to a television ad campaign kicked off Wednesday by Sotomayor’s backers. The JNC’s ad, “Equal Justice for All?— questions Sotomayor’s judicial bent and references an excerpt from a speech that she gave in 2002.“I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experience would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life,— narrates a woman in the network’s ad.The video will also be on Web sites like the Drudge Report, according to the JCN’s Gary Marx.The JCN is also deploying organizers to conservative states represented by Democratic Senators. The group will be announcing the organizers’ names later this week, Marx said.But don’t expect the JCN or groups like the Third Branch Conference and Judicial Watch to buy television ad time anytime soon.A group of Sotomayor supporters called the Coalition for Constitutional Values, made up of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, Alliance for Justice and People for the American Way, launched a television ad Wednesday using Obama’s words to explain why he selected the New York appeals court judge for the high court.Conservative groups questioned the coalition’s decision to make a “six figure— ad buy so early in the process. The Senate is expected to vote on her confirmation before it adjourns for the August recess. She is expected to win the chamber’s approval.“It seems to me if she was a lock for the position they wouldn’t have to take out ads on her behalf,— said Judicial Watch’s Tom Fitton. Judicial Watch is considering placing newspaper advertisements.The Third Branch Coalition’s Manuel Miranda also is advocating against waging a media war over the nomination.“I’m of the view the debate of Sotomayor should be taken up much later,— Miranda said. “We’d be harming ourselves by attempting [to oppose Sotomayor] beyond the simple and easy angle that we have already been given by the president.—The Leadership Conference on Civil Rights defended its ad buy, saying the “main point in running the ads is really to introduce the American public to Judge Sotomayor … It was a good opportunity to reach out to the American public.—In place of running ads, conservative advocates are pressuring Senate Republicans to try to slow down the process, perhaps by threatening to filibuster the nomination.“My feeling is the Republicans were careful in their responses [Tuesday], but you are going to see increasing criticism of Sotomayor,— Fitton said.