Second Amendment rights remain high on the list of issues Republicans are still nervous about when it comes to Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor. But no
Second Amendment rights remain high on the list of issues Republicans are still nervous about when it comes to Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor. But no matter how they try to over-simplify the still-undecided question of whether the Constitution actually grants individual citizens a fundamental right to bear arms, Sotomayor has, as expected, stood firm in not answering the question.
Since the high court struck down a Washington, D.C., handgun control law and found a fundamental right to bear arms, Republicans have been hopeful that the Court will take the next step and say that right applies to the states as well, and would therefore serve to severely restrict states’ rights to restrict gun possession and ownership. But it’s never answered that question — at least, not yet.
Here’s how Republican Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), an avid believer in his fundamental right to gun possession, tried to get Sotomayor to answer the question, and in the process revealing that much of this questioning is aimed at the senators’ constituents, not at any real fact-finding:
“Do I have a right to personal self defense?” asked Coburn.
Sotomayor struggled to think of whether the Supreme Court has addressed the question in that way in any case. “I can’t think of one. The issue of self defense is usually defined in criminal statutes by the states’ laws.”
“But do I personally have an individual right to self defense?” Coburn persisted, knowing full well that any right of self-defense depends on the circumstances and how you try to exercise that right.
“That’s an abstract question and not a particular legal question,” said Sotomayor, always careful to respond with legalistic precision.
“Well, that ‘s what the American people want to hear,” Coburn said. “Is it okay to defend yourself in your home when you’re under attack. The general theory is, do I have that right? I understand if you don’t want to answer,” he said, letting Sotomayor off the hook, implicitly acknowledging he didn’t really expect her to answer it. “That’s a fine answer with me. But that’s what people want to know. Do we have that right?”
Sotomayor proceeded to answer that it really does depend on the specific situation. For example, she said, if Coburn were to threaten to kill her right then and there, and she ran home and got a gun and came back and shot him, she probably would not have the right to do that.
Rep. Patrick McHenry: Please, Conservatives, Fill Out Your Census Forms!
The conservative congressman from North Carolina, a constant critic of the census -- one of the people who sounded the alarm about politicization when the
Rep. Paulsen allies with medical device industry to relax FDA oversight
Source: Flickr; Republicanconference (www.flickr.com/photos/republicanconference) On the heels of the Minnesota Independent story last week about U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen’s cozy financial relationship with the medical device industry, the New York Times reported Tuesday that some health professionals are alarmed by Paulsen’s push to relax Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversight
Rep. Parker Griffith (R-Ala.)
One of the most conservative Democrats in the House -- a freshman who said he couldn’t support Nancy Pelosi again -- is going to switch over to the GOP. Josh
Rep. Paulsen touts balanced budget constitutional amendment
In a post for the conservative blog True North , U.S. Rep
Rep. Paulsen, Karl Rove the latest to get ‘glittered’
Rep. Erik Paulsen and former Bush staffer Karl Rove were both showered with glitter at the Midwest Leadership Conference Friday
Rep. Paul Ryan to deliver SOTU response
Chairman of the House Budget Committee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) will deliver the Republican response to the State of the Union Tuesday, according to Mike Allen
Rep. Perlmutter criticizes House measure that would eliminate 800K federal jobs
Congressman Ed Perlmutter today issued a scathing statement criticizing the House of Representatives for passing a spending bill that could put nearly a million federal employees out of work. The Colorado delegation voted strictly on party lines, with all four Republicans voting in favor of the bill and the three Democrats voting in opposition. Perlmutter’s statement: “My number one priority is to get people back to work because that’s the best thing we can do to pay our debt and move forward toward economic stability
Rep. Perlmutter to hold constituent meet-up in grocery store
Colorado Congressman Ed Perlmutter will hold a Government in the Grocery constituent meet-up this evening from 5-7 at the Safeway at 38th and Wadsworth in Wheat Ridge. The address is 3900 Wadsworth. The meeting, where Perlmutter typically sits at a folding table and talks to whomever shows up, is free and open to the public
Rep. Peace, ACLU seek investigation of soldier’s allegations of racial discrimination in Afghanistan
Both Rep. Steve Pearce (R-NM) and the American Civil Liberties Union agree: There needs to be an investigation into Spc.
School of Hock
A growing number of college grads are defaulting on their student loans as the economy worsens.