In ruling against Sonia Sotomayor's appellate decision in Ricci v. DeStefano--the case brought by white firefighters in New Haven who claimed they were wrongfully denied promotions after an examination yielded no firefighters of color eligible for advancement--the Supreme Court has provided Sotomayor's critics with fodder today.
An official statement from Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell:
The Supreme Court today recognized that Judge Sotomayor's panel wrongly deprived the New Haven firefighters of equal justice under the law. 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.
And another from Judicial Confirmation Network counsel Wendy Long:
Frank Ricci finally got his day in court, despite the judging of Sonia Sotomayor, which all nine Justices of U.S. Supreme Court have now confirmed was in error.
Usually, poor performance in any profession is not rewarded with the highest job offer in the entire profession.
What Judge Sotomayor did in Ricci was the equivalent of a pilot error resulting in a bad plane crash. And now the pilot is being offered to fly Air Force One.
The firefighters in New Haven who protect the public safety and worked hard for their promotions did not deserve to become victims of racial quotas, and the Supreme Court has now confirmed that they did not deserve to have their claims buried and thrown out by Judge Sotomayor.
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