Judge Sonia Sotomayor appears to be just what President Obama wanted and needed: A well-qualified jurist with a compelling personal story, a minority and a woman, and someone with the empathy which Obama has said was an important qualification.
Her initial prospects for Senate confirmation appear very bright, but she bears the earmarks of the kind of justice who drives judicial conservatives crazy. That's because when judges say — as Sotomayor did Tuesday — that she strives "never to forget the real world consequences of my decisions on individuals, businesses and government," they suspect they are in the presence of a judge more worried about the results of her decisions than their fidelity to the law.
Cases which reach the Supreme Court generally do not do so because of the plight of the plaintiffs or defendants. They come to the high court because of the difficult legal and constitutional issues embedded in them.
The justices do not so much decide legal cases as legal issues. They are supposed to decide them dispassionately, with neither empathy nor malice.
In other words without emotion.
That is why the symbol of justice is of a lady balancing scales, but wearing a blindfold. Once sensitivity to the parties and worry about the consequences come into play, the blindfold is off and the law is vulnerable to being not upheld but adjusted to achieve the desired result.
This is what worries judicial conservatives.
— Brit Hume is the senior political analyst for FOX News Channel.
With more than 35 years of journalism experience to draw from, Brit Hume currently serves as a senior political analyst for FOX News Channel (FNC) and contributes to all major political coverage. Hume also is regular panelist on FOX's weekly public affairs program, "FOX News Sunday" on Sundays at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. ET. Click here for more information on Brit Hume.