By J. Taylor Rushing - 06/10/09 02:25 PM EDT
GOP senators on the Judiciary Committee on Wednesday tried a new strategy in the battle over Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, writing directly to ask her to “revisit” her “incomplete” candidate questionnaire.
The letter, addressed to Sotomayor through the White House, says the 173-page questionnaire the nominee submitted last week has too many “apparent omissions.”
The letter was signed by ranking member Jeff SessionsJeff SessionsMaine Republican senator suggests she could back Trump Trump snags third House committee chair endorsement Trump seeks approval from foreign policy experts, but hits snags MORE (Ala.), Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleyAdvocacy group seeks probe into DOD statements on sexual assault Social Security moves to block the mentally ill from purchasing guns GOP group enlists public with opposition research app MORE (Iowa), John CornynJohn CornynGOP urged to confirm Supreme Court nominee after Trump win Judiciary Dems seek hearing on voting rights First US Zika death reported in Puerto Rico MORE (Texas), Jon Kyl (Ariz.), Tom CoburnTom CoburnGOP faces existential threat Sanders tops 2016 field in newly deleted tweets The Hill's 12:30 Report MORE (Okla.), Orrin HatchOrrin HatchInversion rule: latest example of government overreach Supreme Court wrestles with corruption law IRS: Annual unpaid tax liability was 8B MORE (Utah) and Lindsey GrahamLindsey GrahamNever Trump voices face tough decision Trump: GOP critics can come back after my 'two terms' Graham: GOP has 'lost its way' on Trump MORE (S.C.)
Specifically, the senators identify incomplete information on 10 questions about Sotomayor’s background, including cases she handled and speeches or lectures she delivered.
The letter reflects a ratcheting-up of the GOP’s scrutiny over Sotomayor, just hours after Minority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellMcConnell pledges to support Trump The Hill's 12:30 Report Garland confirmation vital to fair consideration of SCOTUS cases MORE (Ky.) used a floor speech to complain about the omissions.
“We are concerned about the fact that you have failed to provide a draft, video or transcript for more than half of your speeches, remarks, lectures, etc.,” the letter reads. “Please advise us of the process you undertook to search for these speeches, and for those that you are unable to provide to the committee, please provide a more thorough explanation of the content of each speech.”
McConnell and Sessions both said the omissions are proof that the White House is attempting to rush Sotomayor’s confirmation through the Senate. McConnell called it “a rush to judgment in order to meet an arbitrary deadline,” while Sessions said Republicans are frustrated that their fairness to Sotomayor has not been returned.
Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick LeahyPatrick LeahyJudiciary Dems seek hearing on voting rights Overnight Cybersecurity: Voter data breaches spark fraud concerns Overnight Regulation: FDA campaign targets smoking in LGBT community MORE (D-Vt.) dismissed the attacks Wednesday, saying that he is following the same timeline that the Senate used to confirm Chief Justice John Roberts.
About Sotomayor’s questionnaire, Leahy noted that thousands of pages of background material on Roberts were not delivered by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library until just before his confirmation hearings.
“We’re on the same schedule,” he said. “If it was good enough for him, why shouldn’t it be good enough for her? And thousands of pages about him didn’t come in until a few days before the hearing.”
This story was updated at 5 p.m.