Washington – At a press conference on Capitol Hill Tuesday, Senator Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) joined with representatives from the National Latino Peace Officers Association (NLPOA) and the Hispanic National Bar Association (HNBA) in support of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to be the next Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.
“Judge Sotomayor’s nomination is proof that the American dream is in reach for everyone willing to work hard, play by the rules and give back to their communities, regardless of their ethnicity, gender or socioeconomic background,” Menendez said. “It’s further proof of the deep roots the Hispanic community has in this country. But let’s be clear: we get to be proud of this nominee because she is exceptionally qualified. We get to be proud because of her vast knowledge of the law, her practical experience fighting crime, and her proven record of dedication to equal justice under law. Those are the reasons we’re proud, and they’re the reasons she should be confirmed without delay.”
Sotomayor is a 17-year veteran of the federal bench, serving for six years as a trial judge in New York’s federal district court, and for 11 years on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. A graduate of Princeton University and Yale Law School, Sotomayor has a long career in law enforcement, and was described as a “fearless and effective prosecutor” by former New York City District Attorney Robert Morgenthau. Sotomayor’s nomination has received broad, bipartisan support since it was announced on May 26. The National Latino Peace Officers Association is one of several law enforcement groups supporting her nomination.
“The NLPOA supports Judge Sonia Sotomayor because she has a long and distinguished career on the federal bench as well as having the depth and breadth of legal experience of all levels of the judicial system,” wrote Art Acevedo, the National President of NLPOA, in a letter to President Obama. “She brings a lifelong commitment to equality, justice, and opportunity, and earned the respect of all her colleagues…in one of the most demanding appeals circuits in America.”
Acevedo is the Chief of the Austin, Texas, Police Department, and attended the Tuesday press conference with NLPOA members Enrique Chavez of the Miami Police Department, Johnny Palermo of the Omaha, Nebraska, Police Department, and Hector Ramos of the New Jersey State Police Department.
The President of the HNBA, Ramona Romero, also offered strong words of support for Sotomayor’s nomination at Tuesday’s press conference.
“Through both her life history and her legal career, Judge Sotomayor has demonstrated intelligence, integrity, strength of character and a commitment to excellence. If confirmed, she will bring these same qualities to her role as a Supreme Court Justice. The confirmation of Judge Sotomayor will be an historic moment for all Americans to celebrate.”
Hearings to consider Sotomayor’s nomination are scheduled to begin on July 13.