Friday, May 29, 2009
To: Friends & Supporters
From: Gary L. Bauer
Sotomayor vs. The Fireman
Barack Obama’s decision to nominate leftist judge Sonia Sotomayor as the first Hispanic woman to the Supreme Court has put Senate Republicans in a precarious position. Hispanics are the fastest-growing voting bloc, and, according to Big Media, attempts to block Sotomayor’s nomination could alienate this group even further from the Republican brand. So what should Republicans do? In a column today, Charles Krauthammer offers one suggestion: Call Frank Ricci as their first witness during Sotomayor’s confirmation hearings.
For those of you don’t know, Frank Ricci is a firefighter in New Haven, Connecticut. Ricci suffered from a serious case of dyslexia that hampered his academic success in high school. Ricci studied fire science at a local community college and fulfilled his duty as a New Haven firefighter for several years. When an opportunity for promotion came up, Ricci quit his second job so he could spend up to 13 hours a day studying for the promotional exam. Because of his dyslexia, he spent $1,000 on books and hired someone to read the text to him. Ricci’s hard work and determination paid off — he finished sixth on the lieutenants’ exam.
All his hard work was for naught, however, as he and others were denied their promotions by the city council because not enough minorities placed well enough on the exam. Ricci and 19 other firefighters sued the city for ignoring the exam results, and their case was heard by Judge Sonia Sotomayor. Sotomayor sided with the city.
Frank Ricci believed in the American dream – that success comes through hard work and determination. But Ricci’s career suffered because of a judge’s belief in “empathy” and “real-life experiences” that didn’t include him. Washington elites have praised Sotomayor’s nomination because of her life story – growing up in a housing project of New York City before attending some of the most prestigious universities in the country. Shouldn’t Frank Ricci be rewarded for his life story, too?
Success in the United States should not be determined by one’s race, but instead by whether a person is truly deserving of a certain honor. The public deserves to hear Mr. Ricci’s story and see the damage that is done to decent people because of someone else’s idea of “empathy.” By calling Frank Ricci as a witness during Sotomayor’s confirmation hearings, the American people would be able to get a glimpse of the liberal judicial philosophy to which she adheres.
Is This Venezuela?
You may recall that on Election Day last year, three members of the Black Panthers showed up at a polling location in Philadelphia with clubs and intimidated white voters and people with McCain stickers. The Justice Department began prosecuting the Panthers who, according to court records, engaged in “coercion, threats and intimidation, … racial threats and insults, … menacing and intimidating gestures, … and movements directed at individuals who were present to vote.” But today we learned that political appointees at the Justice Department overrode the career lawyers who were prosecuting the case.
Now who do you think broke the story that shows gross political corruption and suggests we are going down the road of Venezuela? Was it the New York Times, the Washington Post or the paragons of truth and virtue at MSNBC? No. It was the conservative Washington Times, with its smaller budget and staff. Were Big Media even looking? Of course not.
Congressional conservatives cannot let the Black Panther travesty go unanswered. While they have limited authority as the minority party, every time a Justice Department official testifies on Capitol Hill, no matter what the issue, any member of Congress who cares about colorblind justice, the right to vote and the integrity of our elections should demand answers as to who dropped this case and why.
Will Obama Trigger The “Nuclear Option”?
This week it became clear that President Obama’s choices may end up triggering the “nuclear option.” I’m talking about Obama’s foreign policy choices, which are prompting tyrants the world over to thumb their noses at our new president and in some cases to test their nuclear capabilities.
In my Human Events column today I try to determine whether President Obama’s empathy extends to maniacal foreign tyrants. Either way, one thing is clear: it will take more than eloquent words to compel America’s enemies to behave. You can read and comment on my column here. Thank you.
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