Once again, President Obama has pulled off a shrewd political move by nominating a Latina, Judge Sonia Sotomayor, to the Supreme Court.

There are about 12 million Hispanic-Americans who voted last time around, and 67 percent of them went for Obama. By contrast, just 53 percent voted for John Kerry when he ran against President Bush. So Hispanic voters actually put Barack Obama in the White House, and the GOP needs some of them back, thus Republicans face a quandary.

This morning on ABC, conservative Ann Coulter pretty much defined the problem:


ANN COULTER, CONSERVATIVE COMMENTATOR: Saying that someone would decide a case differently, better in fact, because she is a Latina rather than a white male, I mean, that statement is by definition racist. I'm not saying she's a racist, but the statement sure is.

DIANE SAWYER, "GOOD MORNING AMERICA" CO-HOST: Were you moved by the Hispanic breakthrough, Ann?

COULTER: Why aren't Democrats — why aren't they choking up over Clarence Thomas or Miguel Estrada? I mean, you know, come on, why are we all supposed to weep only when it's a liberal Hispanic or a liberal black?


Ms. Coulter's point is true. Liberals gleefully attacked Clarence Thomas and Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez, but the media is now lurking, looking to pound any conservative who goes after Ms. Sotomayor. So the Republicans have a tough situation on their hands.

The judge is vulnerable, especially on affirmative action, and her racial tone on who has a better outlook on the law, minorities or whites. But to the Hispanic-American community, that might not matter much, especially considering the judge's background:


ROBERT GIBBS, WHITE HOUSE SPOKESMAN: The president believes that her life story is a compelling one.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Her great life story, amazing life story.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not to mention her life story.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A compelling personal story.


Did someone say compelling?

Politics is all about perception. Right now, the Republican Party is perceived to be the domain of rich, white guys. Of course, that's not entirely true, but very often perception trumps reality.

America needs two, maybe three, strong political parties so the country can have healthy debate. We also need voters to be open-minded, not ideological Kool-Aid drinkers.

The Republicans can only get back in the game if they widen their appeal and appeal for common sense. For example, Dick Cheney may be winning the national security debate because he is talking facts, while President Obama talks theory. Fair-minded Americans want to be protected and facts are more compelling — sorry — than lofty rhetoric.

But if the GOP alienates Hispanic-Americans and they begin to vote in blocks like African-Americans do, then the Republican Party is doomed. So Republicans would be wise to watch the rhetoric in assessing Judge Sotomayor.

And that's "The Memo."

Pinheads & Patriots

It is always good for politicians to have a sense of humor, and Bill Clinton certainly does:


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you feel that you've become a bit of a house-husband since Hillary's working with Obama?

BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'll tell you a story about that. The other day, a friend of mine was coming to see me, and the friend has a 5-year-old son, so he said to his son, he said, "I'm going to meet President Clinton. Do you know who that is?" And the little boy said, "Yes, that's Hillary's wife."


For poking fun at himself, Mr. Clinton is a patriot.

On the pinhead front, a rapper named Pitbull was performing in Aspen, Colorado, when he pulled a spectator onto the stage.

Click here to watch "Pinheads & Patriots"!

And get this, Pitbull was not charged and the spectator got thrown out. Justice in the hip-hop world. Pitbull is a pinhead and needs to be collared, thank you very much.

You can catch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" and "Pinheads & Patriots" weeknights at 8 and 11 p.m. ET on the FOX News Channel and any time on foxnews.com/oreilly. Send your comments to: oreilly@foxnews.com