Bork: There’s Nothing Alarming About Sotomayor’s Record, But I Still Oppose Her

In an interview with conservative columnist Stuart Taylor, Jr., failed Reagan Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork claims that the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court is a “bad mistake” because it is “unusual to nominate somebody who states flatly that she was the beneficiary of affirmative action.” Strangely, however, Bork admits that he cannot cite a single decision by Sotomayor, a summa cum laude graduate of Princeton University, which suggests she is inadequate to the task of serving on the Supreme Court:

Any particular issues or cases come to mind?

No. I’ve read them, but I no longer worry about those things, because I don’t teach it anymore. In fact I refuse to teach constitutional law, because it’s so obviously politics and not law. The incoherence of some of those opinions is astounding. If you want to know what the constitution means, you will not learn it from the court.

Although many conservatives continue to hold up Bork as someone who was unfairly denied confirmation, Bork has made a number of statements confirming that the Senate made the right choice in doing so. In a 1997 book, Bork warned that a decline in America’s sexual “morality” would transform the country into “’a degenerate society,’ ‘enfeebled, hedonistic,’ ‘subpagan,’ and headed for ‘ultimate degradation’ in ‘the coming of a new Dark Ages.’” In 1999, Bork called President Clinton a “sociopath.”


His interview with Stuart Taylor is no exception. Indeed, Bork admits to asking God to exact an violent form of vengeance against his critics:

[My confirmation hearing] was really quite harrowing. It got to the point where I could not read the paper because every reference to the proceedings was really adverse to me. So I quit reading everything but the sports section. And then one of the sportswriters took a crack at me. [Laughs.] This kind of stuff was new to my wife, and so she wanted us to read a psalm every morning. I finally came to one about praying to God to break the teeth of my enemies. That seemed to be an adequate sentiment.

Bork can’t seem to let his anger go.