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Kyl to vote ‘no,’ Graham to vote ‘yes’ on Sotomayor

If you got the impression during the confirmation hearings that Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl wasn’t really a fan of Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, you were on the right track.

Kyl announced on the Senate floor that he will vote against President Obama’s choice to fill retired Justice David Souter’s seat on the nation’s highest court.

Kyl, the Senate’s second-ranking Republican, said he was displeased by Sotomayor’s “evasive” answers during the confirmation hearings, her opinions on issues like the Second Amendment and employment bias claims, and her statements including her infamous “wise Latina” comment.

“I’ve looked at judge Sotomayor’s cases [and] have cause for concern,” Kyl said just minutes ago, adding: “I’ve not been persuaded that Judge Sotomayor is committed to setting aside her biases and [judging] based on the rule of law.”

South Carolina Sen. Lindsay Graham, who was also one of Sotomayor’s toughest questioners during the hearings, said he will vote for Sotomayor.

“I understand the path of least resistance for me would be to vote no – that’s probably true anytime you’re in a minority party and you lost the election. But I feel compelled to vote ‘yes,’” Graham said on the floor moments ago. “I feel this is the right vote for me and right vote for the country in this case.”

Graham said he believes that Sotomayor is “well qualified,” and that President Obama has the right to pick the qualified candidate of his choice.

“Elections have consequences,” he said.  “That [the president could pick justices] was known to the American people and the American people spoke. [Obama] deserves some deference on my part when it comes to his first choice for the Supreme Court.”

He also criticized Obama for voting against Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr. and Justice Samuel Alito during their confirmations after noting that they were qualified.

Fellow Republican and Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran, speaking earlier, announced that he would vote against Sotomayor.

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