Republicans Respond to Ricci Decision

The United States Supreme Court on Monday overturned the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals decision in the Ricci v. DeStefano case raising further concerns over Judge Sonya Sotomayor’s Supreme Court nomination.  Many have raised serious concerns over the way she handled the case, including fellow 2nd Circuit Court Judge Jose Cabranes, a Clinton appointee and the Obama Justice Department which filed a brief arguing that Sotomayor’s panel had incorrectly dismissed the case.

In the Ricci case, Sotomayor held that a group of white firefighters had not been subjected to discrimination when they were not promoted even though they had the higher qualifying test scores on their requisite promotion exams.  

In the 5-4 Supreme Court decision, the dissenting justices also found that Sotomayor had applied the wrong standard.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell issued a statement about the ruling on Monday.

“The Supreme Court today recognized that Judge Sotomayor’s panel wrongly deprived the New Haven firefighters of equal justice under the law,” McConnell said.  “Not only did Judge Sotomayor misapply the law, but the perfunctory way in which she and her panel dismissed the firefighters’ meritorious claims of unfair treatment is particularly troubling.  It stands in marked contrast to the way the Supreme Court addressed this very serious matter, underscoring my concern that she may have allowed her personal or political agenda to cloud her judgment and affect her ruling.”

Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee that will hold hearings on Sotomayor’s confirmation, also released a statement Monday on the ruling.

“The Supreme Court found that Judge Sotomayor was wrong to allow the city to change its promotion exam after it was given, solely to favor a group because of race,” Sessions said.  “The Court’s opinion is important because it recognizes that our civil rights law’s prohibition on racial discrimination must be applied evenhandedly.  The City’s action to deny promotion to these 18 firefighters after they had taken and passed an objective exam, fairly created and administered, amounted to reverse discrimination against the firefighters, in violation of federal law.”

“Every citizen has a right to have his or her case heard by a judge who will rule on the laws, the facts, and the Constitution — and not play favorites,” Sessions continued.  “This case sharpens our focus on Judge Sotomayor’s troubling speeches and writings, which indicate the opposite belief: that personal experiences and political views should influence a judge’s decision.  That theory is a breathtaking departure from the proper role of the American judge and will clearly be the subject of questioning at the upcoming hearing.”

“This case will only raise more questions in the minds of the American people concerning Judge Sotomayor’s commitment to treat each individual fairly and not as a member of a group,” Sessions concluded.

Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas), the House Judiciary Committee’s ranking Republican also weighed in on the decision.

“I applaud the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold equal rights for all and to strike down government decisions based on race,” Smith said.  “Unlike the Second Circuit’s decision where a panel of judges issued a short paragraph affirming the lower court’s ruling, the Supreme Court’s decision shows a thorough and careful examination of the law.”

“No individual should be denied a promotion simply based on the color of their skin,” Smith added.   “The Second Circuit wrongly upheld a decision that supports discrimination by the government.  The Supreme Court today reminded all courts and governments that equal justice under the law means refusing to tip the scale in favor of one race over another.  The Senate Judiciary Committee should carefully examine Judge Sotomayor’s role in the Second Circuit’s opinion on this case.  Discrimination and racial preferences have no place in our courts, let alone on the highest court in the land.”   

Obama Administration Suppresses EPA Counter Global Warming Report

Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), the ranking Republican on the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, has called for an investigation into the suppression of a report by Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) analyst Alan Carlin that calls into question the validity of global warming.  

Carlin’s 98-page report accuses the EPA of using old data to reach its conclusions and points out that even though carbon dioxide levels have increased, global temperatures have declined.

Finding a factual push back against the global warming hoax inconvenient, Obama’s EPA decided to suppress the report’s findings and moved forward with plans to regulate carbon dioxide as a threat to public health and welfare.

The Competitive Enterprise Institute has released the email evidence of the intentional suppression of the report that show the report was rejected solely for political reasons.  The emails can be found here.  (pdf)