All the talk about race has obscured what, for liberals, ought to be the central question about Sonia Sotomayor: Is she progressive enough? There’s precious little evidence either way, writes Dayo Olopade of The Root. Sotomayor’s 2nd Circuit court leans conservative and handles mostly commercial cases; she’s never ruled on abortion, gay marriage, torture, executive power, or other issues liberals care about.
Sotomayor is often described as a “moderate.” In criminal cases, she typically sides with the government. EJ Dionne has called her “the most conservative choice that President Obama could have made,” and NARAL sent supporters a letter questioning her commitment to abortion rights and privacy. On the bright side, that nondescript record should make her easy to confirm, and she’s rumored to be the skilled behind-the-scenes operator liberals have long craved on the court.