Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) seemed to finally get what he was looking for from Judge Sonia Sotomayor today in the way of a reflection on her "wise Latina" quote. The comment has figured as prominently as anything else during her questioning; she has explained it by saying it was misunderstood and taken out of context, that she spoke it in the spirit of Justice Sandra Day O'Connor's comment that a wise old man and a wise old woman would reach the same conclusion in deciding a case, that it was a "rhetorical flourish" that "fell flat," and that "it was bad" and "didn't work," given that some took it as a statement of racial preference.
Graham has questioned Sotomayor aggressively at times. He has praised her experience and surmised that her judicial record isn't shocking to his right-of-center sensibilities; he has also made strongly implied that she's a biased adherent to identity politics.
As he concluded his second round of questions today, Graham heard Sotomayor express regret, and he seemed satisfied. Here's how his questioning ended:
GRAHAM: Last question on on the "wise Latino woman" comment: to those who may be bothered by that, what do you say?
SOTOMAYOR: I regret that I have offended some people. I believe that my life demonstrates that that was not my intent, to leave the impression that some have taken from my words.
GRAHAM: You know what judge? I agree with you. Good luck.