History was made today when the Senate confirmed Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the U.S. Supreme Court. The National Organization for Women proudly celebrates Sotomayor’s landmark achievement as the first Hispanic justice to sit on the high court and just the third woman justice.
Judge Sotomayor will bring more federal judicial experience to the court than any justice in 100 years, and more overall judicial experience than anyone confirmed in the past 70 years. In addition to her exemplary qualifications, Sotomayor will bring an important viewpoint to the bench. Though it was a difficult concept for some senators to grasp, Sotomayor’s experience as a member of two groups who often experience discrimination in this country can only help to broaden the court’s perspective on inequity and help advance the cause of equality and justice for all.
Women have every reason to be outraged about gender disparity on the Supreme Court. When Sotomayor joins Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the court this fall, women will occupy a whopping 22 percent of the bench. Sixteen years passed between the confirmations of Ginsburg and Sotomayor, and three men were elevated to the high court during that time. At that unacceptable rate, it could take decades, maybe even centuries, to achieve a gender balanced court. There’s no excuse to wait for equality: NOW calls for every open seat on the Supreme Court to be filled by a woman until there are four, if not five women justices.
Caitlin Gullickson , media[at]now.org
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