Sotomayor Gets High Marks from Old Boss
By Jerry Markon
Among those stepping forward to voice support for Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor is her first boss. Longtime Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau told The Washington Post this week that Sotomayor was an “extraordinary” prosecutor after he hired her out of Yale Law School in 1979.
“She’s highly intelligent, extremely fair and not doctrinaire,‘’ said Morgenthau, a legendary prosecutor whose office was the model for the television show “Law & Order.’’
“She makes decisions based on the facts and not ideology. And she’s always prepared,’’ added Morgenthau, who is retiring this year after nearly 35 years.
In an opinion piece in today's New York Daily News, Morgenthau defended Sotomayor against allegations from some conservatives that she is a liberal judicial activist, writing that “I know how absurd these charges are. I doubt that anyone will be fooled by them.’’
Morgenthau told the Post that Sotomayor was hired in part because he was impressed with her “remarkable background” growing up in “humble surroundings” in the South Bronx. He wrote today that he is “astonished” that some have labeled Sotomayor “an affirmative action beneficiary…it is simply unreasonable, if not racist, so to impugn this individual... Sotomayor is where she is today because of her talent.’’
Sotomayor focused in part on pornography cases during her five years in Morgenthau’s office. Her most prominent case was the conviction, with another prosecutor, of the "Tarzan murderer," a man who swung onto the balconies of tenement apartments to rob people and sometimes shoot them.She left the office for a New York law firm, Morgenthau told the Post, because she “wanted to make more money.’’
May 28, 2009; 4:06 PM ET
Categories: Supreme Court
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