May 26, 2024

Sonia Sotomayor reveals personal sadness about conservative-led SCOTUS rulings

The job of a sitting justice on the United States Supreme Court is one that requires large commitments of time, intellectual energy, and mental stamina, and it is therefore a challenge for most anyone.

However, as the Daily Caller reports, Justice Sonia Sotomayor recently revealed that, for her, the position is also one that can be fraught with emotional difficulty, particularly when a ruling does not go her way.

Tears of a justice

Speaking to a group at Harvard's Radcliffe Institute, Sotomayor delved into the emotional strain certain conservative-led opinions have taken on her in recent years.

The justice went so far as to assert that some of the rulings handed down during her tenure on the bench have left her in “tears.”

Underscoring the burdens of serving on the highest court in the land, Sotomayor declared, “If not physically, we must devote our lives. Mind you, there are days that I've come to my office after an announcement of a case and closed my door and cried.”

“There have been those days. And there are likely to be more,” she added.

Sotomayor went on, “There are moments when I'm deeply, deeply sad. And there are moments, and yes, even I feel desperation. We all do. But you have to own it. You have to accept it. You have to shed the tears, and then you have to wipe them and get up some more. That's not a choice.”

Resignation talk roils

Some on the far left, however, would suggest an escape route for Sotomayor, with many liberal activists having recently called for the justice to step down while her replacement could still be nominated by President Joe Biden.

Citing concerns that the refusal of the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg to retire while Barack Obama was still in office could be repeated with Sotomayor, many progressive voices have urged swift action on the justice's part.

However, with Sotomayor having given no indication that she intends to leave the court anytime soon, a number of prominent Democrats have come to her defense and declared that it is her decision and her decision alone, as NBC News reported earlier this year.

Though he acknowledged the concerns about succession should a Republican take the Oval Office this fall, Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) said that “justices have to make their personal decisions” and that Sotomayor remains “a highly accomplished and, obviously, fully functioning justice right now.”

Judiciary Committee member Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI) said she's “not going to be talking about anybody choosing to retire,” signaling her disagreement with a vocal -- and perhaps growing -- contingent of liberals who feel that the time is now to stave off what they feel could be another disastrous addition to the court should Donald Trump win a second term in just a few months' time.

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