“They Tell Me I Shouldn’t But . . .”: Sotomayor Calls on Law Students to Oppose the Texas Abortion Law

Modern justices have long chafed at the restraints of judicial ethical rules about public commentary. The late Ruth Bader Ginsburg was celebrated as “notorious” due in part to her controversial public speeches and discussions of pending or expected cases before the Court. Despite my long criticism of this trend, I was still taken aback by comments of Justice Sonia Sotomayor at an event organized by the American Bar Association. In her comments, Sotomayor appeared to call for political campaigns and discussed a matter just before the Court. Despite the discussion of the case and political opposition from a sitting justice, the ABA members were silent as were the many liberal activists who have been denouncing the Court as too “political.”I admittedly hold a more traditional and cloistered view of public role of justices. I was particularly critical of the late Justice Antonin Scalia and Justice Ginsburg who relished appearances before ideologically supportive groups. Other justices like Justice Samuel Alito also crossed this line of judicial decorum and restraint in my view. We have seen more and more public speaking by justices in both books and speeches on contemporary issues. I have called this trend the “rise of the celebrity justice.” However, what occurred this week was troubling. Justice Sotomayor participated in the event with law students by Zoom. Sotomayor first told the law students to expect a “huge amount” of disappointment in the law and pointed to “my dissents” as evidence of that struggle.  
Sotomayor then turned to the recent court decision not to intervene in the Texas abortion case. Sotomayor wrote a heated dissent in Whole Woman Health v. Jackson. After criticizing her colleagues for their “stunning” decision, she called on students to politically oppose the law: “You know, I can’t change Texas’ law but you can and everyone else who may or may not like it can go out there and be lobbying forces in changing laws that you don’t like.” She then added “I am pointing out to that when I shouldn’t because they tell me I shouldn’t. But my point is that there are going to be a lot of things you don’t like” and require public action.”
It was plainly obvious that Justice Sotomayor was encouraging students to politically oppose the law and laws like it.  She was already on record in both her dissent and her public comments that she viewed the law as horrific and unacceptable.Not only is the Court scheduled to deal with the Dobbs case this term, Whole Woman Health v. Jackson was only denied a stay.  New appeals are working toward the Court. Now that Sotomayor has called for political action and lobbying against the law, there may be calls for her to recuse herself though she is unlikely to do so. What is most striking is how Sotomayor’s words have received praise and virtually no criticism from the left. Professors and writers have been calling for the packing of the Court due to what they describe as a politically active majority on the right of the Court.  Here is a justice calling directly for political action to change a law being appealed to the Supreme Court. Yet, there is not a peep of protest from figures like Dean Erwin Chemerinsky that the conservatives on the Court are a bunch of “political hacks.”

I believe that Justice Sotomayor has been a strong addition to the Court and, while I sometimes disagree with her, she has already carved out an influential legacy. I also do not consider her or any of her colleagues a “political hack.” Moreover, I have criticized justices on the left and the right of the Court for public comments. However, this type of commentary undermines the integrity of the Court in dealing with opinions with tremendous impact on all citizens. They have a right to expect justices to speak through their opinions and refrain from such public political remarks, particularly on matters before or coming to the Court.

 

86 thoughts on ““They Tell Me I Shouldn’t But . . .”: Sotomayor Calls on Law Students to Oppose the Texas Abortion Law”

      1. JT writes “l also do not consider her or any of her colleagues a “political hack.”” I do not believe that you think thus. Of course she’s a political hack. Not only are her decisions not grounded in the constitution, her speeches make it clear. She is an ideologue, with a black robe, nothing more. With Justices like her, there is no Constitution, only personal policy making.

  1. Just imagine the catastrophe if Kavanaugh would have said that what the court needs is a wise white guy. Surely a volcano would have erupted over at MSNBC. The left has taught us that we should be blind to race but when Sotomayor removes her blinders the left could care less.

  2. “THEY ARE NOT ‘MIGRANTS’ – THEY ARE ‘A DISCORDANT INTERMIXTURE’ – THEY ARE INVADERS”

    America is a nation of laws. All zygotes are created equal – equal with the mothers who carry them. The choice is the zygote’s, not the mother’s. Homicide is constitutionally codified as being a violation of and against the law. It is no wonder an anti-American, shrouded in foreign allegiances and propensities, forswears the Constitution. This foreign hyphenate affirmative action project, ensconced on the American Supreme Court by the global communist Deep Deep State, is advocating criminal behavior, that is to say, homicide, or the killing of one human being by another. Justices of the Supreme Court are compelled by the Constitution, not to influence individuals, brainwash citizens or legislate, but to swear, to take an oath, to support the literal, “manifest tenor” of the Constitution. This anomalous entity has violated the oath to be sworn to by actual Supreme Court Justices.

    This unintended consequence was foreseen by the Founders:

    “The influx of foreigners must, therefore, tend to produce a heterogeneous compound; to change and corrupt the national spirit; to complicate and confound public opinion; to introduce foreign propensities. In the composition of society, the harmony of the ingredients is all-important, and whatever tends to a discordant intermixture must have an injurious tendency.”

    – Alexander Hamilton
    ________________

    Article 6, Clause 3

    …all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution;…
    ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    “A KILLING OF ONE HUMAN BEING BY ANOTHER…”

    homicide noun

    ho·​mi·​cide | \ ˈhä-mə-ˌsīd
    , ˈhō-
    \
    Definition of homicide

    1 : a person who kills another

    2 : a killing of one human being by another detectives investigating a homicide
    ______________________________________________________________

    “…THE DEVELOPING INDIVIDUAL…”

    zygote noun

    zy·​gote | \ ˈzī-ˌgōt
    \
    Definition of zygote

    : a cell formed by the union of two gametes broadly

    : the developing individual produced from such a cell

    – Merriam Webster

  3. Nothing is sacred to the Left because they find out constitutional system flawed since it is a barrier to the Leftist political ends

  4. “Modern justices have long chafed at the restraints of judicial ethical rules about public commentary. The late Ruth Bader Ginsburg was celebrated as “notorious” due in part to her controversial public speeches and discussions of pending or expected cases before the Court.”

    These restraints only apply to fascist judges, not progressive leftists who are building a new utopia.

    “Despite my long criticism of this trend, I was still taken aback by comments of Justice Sonia Sotomayor at an event organized by the American Bar Association.”

    I am waiting for the first s@@tlib to call you a “nazi”. JT, I hate to tell you that your previous support for liberal causes will do little good in placating these people. You’re still a “nazi” or at least a “nazi” enabler.

    I WANT A DIVORCE!

    antonio

  5. OT

    Trump and his lawyers are such idiots. His lawyers told a federal court yesterday that Facebook’s terms of service “do not apply to governmental entities, including Plaintiff, as the Forty Fifth President of the United States.” “President Trump’s social media accounts were government accounts, and not private ones.” They ignore that this argument creates questions about how he, a private citizen, would have standing to sue over their suspension. It’s also laughable for them to assert that Facebook has no 1st Amendment rights with respect to government accounts.
    https://storage.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.flsd.595800/gov.uscourts.flsd.595800.77.0.pdf

    1. When everything else fails, fall back on the four D’s: Deflect, Deny, Dissemble, Democrat. Used to work every time. But the schtick is getting old. People are on to it.

  6. The Progressive Religion. Institutions that have been (re)made to serve the Progressive Ideal are sacrosanct. Those that pose a threat to the Progressive Order are blasphemous idols that must be destroyed. The Supreme Court is the latest example.

  7. “They tell me I shouldn’t but since there are zero consequences I will just do it anyway.” That’s definitely what we want from the highest court in the land.

  8. There have been great decisions written by Justices with a far ranging ideology vis a vis the Constitution as proven by the fact that I have enjoyed reading opinions written by Justice Scalia and Justice William Brennan. The difference between a Scalia, a Brennan and even a Ginsburg and a Sotomeyer is that the former based their opinions on the actual words and meaning of the Constitution while the latter is just a political hack.

    Sotomeyer rules in the same manner as todays “journalists” cover politics. Today’s “journalists” have decided that facts and fairness are trumped (sorry, it is the best word in this context) by subjectivity and a desire to get what they want. The justice operates in the same manner, she has an end goal and then uses pretext to conjure up an opinion that satisfies her agenda.

    No standards in schools, exam schools being eliminated, test score being discarded, segregated universities, two National Anthems, peaceful riots, presidents that can’t even recite a WRITTEN sentence and a government and a media that call pregnant women pregnant people?? I know that I am getting up there in years and that we heard our parents many years ago fret about our music, but the country is going you know where in a handbasket and it is happening rapidly.

    1. Sotomayor is not a political hack. Her opinions are also based “on the actual words and meaning of the Constitution,” as well as on relevant court rulings. You don’t provide even one actual example of her doing what you claim. I doubt you can.

      1. Anonymous, please citeONE TIME where Sotomeyer sided with 4 conservatives. I can show you may times where either Kavanaugh, Roberts, Scalia or others on the right will upset the conservatives by going with the left side of the Court. Please show me one time where the left has been forced to say that they are disappointed in Sotomeyer’s decision. Do you really believe that there has never been a time where she could go against the left if she was following the Constitution?

        1. According to SCOTUSblog statistics, in the 2019-2020 term Sotomayor voted with Roberts 67% of the time, with Kavanaugh 64%, with Gorsuch 63%, with Alito 57%, and with Thomas 50% of the time. In the 2020-2021 term, Sotomayor voted with Roberts 66% of the time, with Kavanaugh 66%, with Gorsuch 58%, with Barrett 58%, with Thomas 55%, and with Alito 53% of the time. In a review of “the Supreme Court’s election law jurisprudence under the Roberts court,” SCOTUSblog also noted that “Sotomayor’s 19% of votes in a conservative direction is more than double the rate at which the most conservative justices voted in a liberal direction.” You can look at their data here: https://www.scotusblog.com/reference/stat-pack/
          She’s clearly sided with conservatives in all of the unanimous opinions. If you think that liberals always agree with the Court’s unanimous rulings, you’re kidding yourself. If you want an example of her siding with conservatives in a non-unanimous opinion, look it up for yourself.

          Still waiting for YOU to provide even one actual example of her doing what you claim.

    1. Mike, did I say anything about Sotomeyer opining publicly? No, I didn’t. I mentioned her lack of reasoning when making decisions, decisions that are supposed to be CONSTITUTION based. Now try and reply to my actual comment.

  9. Like this allegedly educated prog was ever bipartisan. She is the epitome of Affirmative action chaos …and chaos is the last bipolar blight the SCOTUS needs. She was a hack then and a hack now.

  10. Why am I not surprised? This woman has a long history of radical leftist, biased views. Her leftist philosophy precludes her from making just decisions. Such an individual contributes to the low opinion of the Supreme Court in public polls. Although nothing can be done about it, she should not be a Supreme Court justice!

  11. Why just law school students? Reminds me of a George Carlin line: “It’s a small club and you and I are not in it.” Does show those of us who are not lawyers just what our opinions are to this Justice.

  12. She a clown and a loser in life. Bound to destroy America to make up for her lack of skills and brain power. Unemployable in the real world. Like most them. Belongs nowhere in a position of power. Except more from these lunatics.

    1. Did I miss a reference to Justice “I can’t remember the enumerated rights in the First Amendment” Barrett? Funny it was the freedom to protest. I guess that shouldn’t worry us too much.

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