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Sotomayor hearings: Judge references Samuel Alito's comments about his own background

July 14, 2009 |  1:20 pm

Tott-alito_itolmync At one point during Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl’s third-degree examination of Sonia Sotomayor over her “wise Latina” comments, the judge pointed out that a sitting Supreme Court Justice had once acknowledged the influence of his background and personal experiences on his decision-making. 

During his own 2006 confirmation hearings before the Judiciary Committee, the famously conservative Samuel Alito told senators that his Italian-immigrant background affects the ways he hears cases, she said.

Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy hammered home that point before breaking, when he read out loud Alito’s exact quote:

“When I get a case about discrimination, I have to think about people in my own family who suffered discrimination because of their ethnic background or because of religion or because of gender. And I do take that into account.”

– Kate Linthicum

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Photo: Samuel Alito. Credit: Brendan Smialowski / Getty Images