Abortion Advocates Point to Supreme Court Brief Showing Sotomayor Backs Roe

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 29, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Abortion Advocates Point to Supreme Court Brief Showing Sotomayor Backs Roe

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
May 29
, 2009

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — With both sides of the abortion debate desperate to get their hands on anything that would give an indication of where Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor stands on abortion, abortion advocates are pointing to a Supreme Court brief written 20 years ago as evidence she’s alright for them.

In the late 1980s, Sotomayor, then an attorney and not yet a federal judge, sat on the board of directors of a group now called Latino Justice.

While sitting on the board, the group, called the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund at the time, filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court urging support for abortion.

The brief came in the Webster v. Reproductive Health Services case where the high court did not overturn Roe but did allow a Missouri state law limiting abortions to pass constitutional muster.

The PRLDEF sided with other abortion advocates and essentially argued that Hispanic women would be discriminated against if the Supreme Court overturned Roe and abortion were prohibited. The brief claimed women would resort to illegal abortions should that happen.

Bonnie Erbe, a staunch abortion advocate who has gone as far as applauding the recent increase in the number of abortions, talked about the brief on her U.S. News blog.

She said that the head of one of the nation’s largest pro-abortion groups presented the information about the brief to her as part of a series of evidence showing Sotomayor sufficiently pro-abortion.

"I have been told by a well-known leader of a major progressive women’s rights group that Judge Sonia Sotomayor is pro-choice. This leader has spoken with many of the judge’s associates and clerks over the years," Erbe explains.

"While there is no one this person spoke with who confirmed he or she had had a conversation with Judge Sotomayor in which she self-identified as pro-choice, everyone my source spoke with said it was evident in her personality and attitude," Erbe continued.

"If, as a member of PRLDEF’s board, Judge Sotomayor had objected to any of this language, she could have attempted to stop the group from lending its name to the amicus brief, and she did not," Erbe writes about the amicus brief. "Big sigh of relief from the pro-choice crowd."

Although the brief was written 20 years ago by someone other than Sotomayor and may have been done without her knowledge or consent, some abortion advocates appear to have their smoking gun to allow them to support Sotomayor with fewer reservations than they have thus far.

For pro-life organizations, the brief will likely be another piece of evidence leading to opposition of her nomination.

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