Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Sotomayor on Sotomayor: Revises, extends her words

By NANCY BENAC, Associated Press Writer Nancy Benac, Associated Press Writer – Tue Jul 14, 7:00 pm ET

WASHINGTON – It's a good thing Sonia Sotomayor speaks Sotomayoran.

After week upon week in which plenty of other people on the planet interpreted Sotomayor's past comments, the Supreme Court nominee at last got a chance to deconstruct her own words Tuesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Fingers splayed, palms flat, hands bouncing up and then deliberately pressing down to the table, Sotomayor elaborated, clarified, expanded, retracted.

She drew loopy circles on her paper; she ran rhetorical circles around her past words.

"I didn't intend to suggest ..." she explained.

"What I was speaking about ..." she offered.

"As I have tried to explain ..." she parsed.

"I wasn't talking about ..." she demurred.

She was a tough critic at times.

"I was using a rhetorical flourish that fell flat," she averred.

"It was bad," she said. Of her own words.

Democrats were only too happy to take Sotomayor's rhetorical revisions at face value as she explained away the most problematic of her past remarks.

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