The White House is working hard to ensure an easy confirmation for Sonia Sotomayor, with John Roberts' perfect-10 testimony as a model. Will she sail through? Politico lists six things to watch.
- That 'wise Latina' remark. Republicans are obsessed with it, and she needs to explain it without sounding phony. But Dems say she won't apologize.
- Her broken ankle. Sotomayor might need an "injury time out" if it acts up—good for sympathy points or a quick breather.
- Jeff Sessions. The committee's ranking Republican has vowed to be tough. If he hits hard, other GOP members may follow his lead.
- Herb Kohl. The Dems' No. 2 is considered dull and non-confrontational. Will he be able to pump Sotomayor back up if Sessions punctures her?
- Praise for President 41. Democrats will remind everyone that the elder Bush appointed her to the federal bench.
- Those two guys at the end. Who are the two lowest-ranking Dems on the committee? Party-flipper Arlen Specter, who used to run the show but lost his seniority—and Al Franken, in office for a week.