Sonia Sotomayor

  • Aired:  02/04/13
  •  | Views: 20,676

Justice Sotomayor discusses her funny colleagues, self-reliant childhood and most conservative belief as an Independent. (6:44)

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

>> Stephen: WELCOME BACK MY GUEST TONIGHT IS A SUPREME COURT JUSTICE, I DON'T KNOW

ABOUT YOU, BUT THAT'S A PRETTY BIG DEAL TO ME PLEASE WELCOME JUSTICE SONIA SOTOMAYOR!

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

NICE TO MEET YOU.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR COMING ON.

>> I'M REALLY DELIGHTED TO BE HERE.

>> Stephen: DO YOU GUYS WHEN YOU COME OUT IN YOUR ROBES, DO YOU EVER GET A RESPONSE LIKE

THAT FROM THE PEANUT GALLERY?

>> NEVER.

>> Stephen: YOU HAVE TO GET YOURSELVES LIKE A PUMPING SONG OR SOMETHING.

A KICKIN BASS BEAT OR SOMETHING TO COME OUT THERE.

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN YURK SUPREME COURT JUSTICES -- MAYBE?

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

>> DO YOU KNOW THAT WHEN I WAS SWORN IN, THE SECURITY OFFICERS THREATENED TO EJECT ANYONE FROM

THE ROOM WHO CLAPPED.

>> Stephen: REALLY?

>> THEY SCARED MY FAMILY SO MUCH THAT FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MY ENTIRE LIFE THEY STAYED SILENT.

>> Stephen: WOW, SO YOU ARE NOT TO ENJOY YOURSELF AT THE SUPREME COURT?

DO YOU ENJOY YOURSELF AT THE SUPREME COURT?

>> SOME OF MY COLLEAGUES ARE PRETTY FUNNY.

OCCASIONALLY WE DO LAUGH.

>> Stephen: WHO IS THE FUNNIEST?

>> OH, NO, I'M NEVER GOING TO PICK AMONG A COLLEAGUE.

THERE'S AN ARTICLE THAT MEASURES THE NUMBER OF LAUGHS.

I'M PRETTY LOW ON THAT SCALE.

>> Stephen: REALLY?

IT'S WONDERFUL TO HAVE YOU HERE.

AN HONOR TO HAVE A SITTING SUPREME COURT JUSTICE WITH US.

NO FAN OF LIBERAL JUDICIAL ACTIVISM, I WANT YOU TO KNOW THAT.

I'M A FAN OF SELLING THINGS AND YOU'VE GOT A BOOK YOU ARE PUSHING RIGHT NOW.

SONYA SOAT MAYOR, "MY BELOVED WORLD." THIS SAY VERY REVEALING PORTRAIT OF WHERE YOU GREW UP IN THE BRONX.

WHY DO WE NEED TO KNOW THIS MUCH ABOUT SUPREME COURT JUSTICES?

BECAUSE IT USED TO BE NINE SORT OF FACELESS WHITE GUYS OUT THERE AND AMERICA RAN GREAT.

[ LAUGHTER ]

I MEAN FOR THE MOST PART, HERE OR THERE.

>> HERE OR THERE, DRED SCOTT.

>> Stephen: YEAH, WHATEVER.

[ LAUGHTER ]

YOU ALWAYS SAY DRED SCOTT.

NOW HOW DID YOUR CHILDHOOD GROWING UP IN THE BRONX INFLUENCE YOUR JOB NOW?

>> I DON'T KNOW IF IT INFLUENCES MY JOB NOW, BUT IT'S MADE THE PERSON I AM.

AND SO THERE'S A LOT OF PEOPLE WHO ARE INTERESTED IN THAT.

I THINK THE MOST IMPORTANT MESSAGE OF THE BOOK IS, NO, WE'RE NOT NINE FACELESS PEOPLE.

WE'RE NINE HUMAN BEINGS AND EACH OF US WITH OUR OWN STORY AND EACH OF US AN ORDINARY HUMAN

BEING WITH AN EXTRAORDINARY JOB AT TIMES.

WE'RE STILL PEOPLE.

I WANTED EVERYONE WHO READ THIS BOOK -- BECAUSE I KNOW MOST PEOPLE SHARE AN EXPERIENCE I'VE

HAD OR FEELING I'VE HAD ABOUT AN EXPERIENCE -- THAT EVERYONE WHO READ IT COULD ULTIMATELY COME

OUT AND SAY SOMETHING LIKE, "YOU KNOW SHE'S JUST LIKE ME.

AND IF SHE CAN REACH HER DREAMS, I CAN REACH MINE."

[ APPLAUSE ]

>> Stephen: YOU GREW UP POOR.

YOUR FATHER DIED WHEN YOU WERE NINE.

YOU HAD TO LOOK AFTER YOURSELF A FAIR AMOUNT.

YOU HAD EVEN HAD TO INJECT YOUR OWN INSULIN AS A CHILD WITH DIABETES.

YOU ARE SO SELF RELIANT.

THAT SEEMS LIKE A VALUE THAT CONSERVATIVES EMBRACE ALL THE TIME.

WHY AREN'T YOU A REPUBLICAN IF YOU BELIEVE IN SELF RELIANCE.

>> HOW DO YOU KNOW I'M NOT?

>> Stephen: BECAUSE OBAMA APPOINTED YOU.

[ LAUGHTER ]

THAT'S THE ONLY LITMUS TEST I NEED.

[LAUGHTER]

I'M NOT A SENATOR.

YOU CAN'T WALK AROUND ME.

>> SURPRISINGLY ENOUGH TO YOU I'M NOT A DEMOCRAT.

I'M INDEPENDENT.

REGISTERSREGISTERS TO NO PARTY.

>> Stephen: WHAT IS THE MOST CONSERVATIVE BELIEF YOU HAVE?

[LAUGHTER]

>> I BELIEVE IN THE CONSTITUTION.

[ APPLAUSE ]

>> Stephen: ALL RIGHT.

ALL RIGHT.

WELL, THEN, YOU KNOW WHAT?

THEN I BELIEVE YOU ARE NOT A DEMOCRAT.

[ LAUGHTER ]

ALL RIGHT.

I GOT A BEEF WITH YOU --

>> YOU DON'T BELIEVE THAT WE ALL SHARE COMMON VALUES.

>> Stephen: NOT ALL OF US BELIEVE IN THE CONSTITUTION.

THE SECOND AMENDMENT IS NEVER TO BE QUESTIONED.

DO YOU BELIEVE WE HAVE THE RIGHT TO HAVE ANY WEAPON WE WANT.

>> WELL, YOU'LL FIND OUT SOON ENOUGH WHEN THE CASE COMES UP.

[ LAUGHTER ]

>> Stephen: THIS IS WHAT I LIKE.

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]

HOW SWEET IS THAT LIFETIME THING?

[LAUGHTER]

HOW LONG BEFORE YOU JUST START PHONING IT IN?

[LAUGHTER]

>> NEVER.

THERE ISN'T A JUSTICE AND NOT ONE THAT I KNOW IN THE HISTORY OF OUR COURTS THAT HASN'T CARED

PASSIONATELY ABOUT WHAT HE OR SHE IS OR HAS DONE ON THE COURT.

I DON'T EVER EXPECT ANYBODY TO PHONE IT IN.

>> Stephen: WHEN YOU GO TO THE BRONX AND YOU SEE A YOUNG GIRL ON A PLAYGROUND THERE DO YOU

THINK THAT CHILD HAS THE SAME OPPORTUNITIES I HAD WHEN I WAS A CHILD?

[LAUGHTER]

THE KIDS DEGREING UP IN THE BRONX NOW?

>> WELL, A PIECE OF ME WOULD WANT HER TO BECOME A JUSTICE INSTEAD OF A PERSON ON

TELEVISION, BECAUSE OUTSIDE OF THAT --

>> Stephen: THAT WAS ME SAYING OPPORTUNITIES I HAVE -- I WAS BEING YOU.

>> I WAS WONDERING, I TOOK YOU LITERALLY.

>> Stephen: YEAH, NO I WAS IN CHARACTER.

>> OH.

>> Stephen: I APOLOGIZE.

>> YOU MEAN THIS IS NOT REALLY YOU?

>> Stephen: NO THIS IS ME.

A SECOND AGO I WAS PLAYING THE CHARACTER OF YOU.

[ LAUGHTER ]

YOUR HONOR, I MOVE WE ADJOURN.

[ LAUGHTER ]

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

>> THANK YOU.

>> Stephen: JUSTICE SOAT MAYOR.

THE BOOK IS -- JUSTICE SONYA SOAT -- JUSTICE SONIA SOTOMAYOR, "MY BELOVED WORLD."