More Republicans are coming on board...
Three centrist Republicans announced they'd support Sotomayor even as the Senate's minority leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, said he'd vote no. The split was a vivid reflection of the divisions in the GOP as the party faces a tricky vote on Sotomayor, wary of alienating its conservative base but equally afraid to anger Hispanic and women voters.
GOP Sens. Richard Lugar of Indiana, the Senate's most senior Republican, Mel Martinez of Florida, its lone Hispanic Republican, and Olympia Snowe of Maine all announced they'd vote for Sotomayor, praising her qualifications and her testimony at four days of Judiciary Committee hearings this week.
"I was pleased that Judge Sotomayor repeatedly recognized in her responses this week that 'the job of a judge is to apply the law' rather than independently make policy, and that it is the law, rather than one's own sympathies that 'compels conclusions in cases,' " Snowe said in a statement.
McConnell planned a speech Monday in which he'll say the 55-year-old appeals court judge's past statements demonstrate an "alarming lack of respect for the notion of equal justice," and question her ability to separate her sympathies and prejudices from her decisions.
McConnell joins other GOP conservatives who are lining up firmly against Sotomayor, including Sen. Robert Bennett, R-Utah, who announced Friday that he'll vote no, citing her position on gun rights and comments he said indicate "a tendency toward judicial activism." But with solid backing from Democrats, who enjoy a lopsided majority, and a growing number of Republicans, there's virtually no doubt the judge will be confirmed as the 111th Supreme Court justice. read more here....