July 29, 2009
Senate Democratic leaders are calling on Republican senators to join them in voting to confirm Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor next week.
Majority Leader Harry Reid says if they don't, the GOP could face painful political consequences for opposing the judge in line to become the first Hispanic justice.
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy says he's "disappointed" that more Republicans haven't sided with him in support of Sotomayor. Just one Republican on the panel voted to send her nomination to the full Senate, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina.
Most Republicans have come out against Sotomayor. Some are weighing fears of a Hispanic backlash against other concerns, such as gun rights.
The National Rifle Association has warned senators that a vote to confirm Sotomayor would count against them in the group's annual candidate ratings. Since the NRA's threat, no Republican or conservative Democrat has come out publicly to support Sotomayor.