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Obama nominates Sonia Sotomayor to Supreme Court

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama introduced his nominee to the Supreme Court on Tuesday, Judge Sonia Sotomayor of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Appearing in the White House East Room with her at his side, Obama called Sotomayor "an inspiring woman who I believe will make a great justice."

He said she met his two basic criteria, intellect and a "recognition of the limits of the judicial role. . . . A judge's role is to interpret, not make law."

He stressed a third quality, saying that she had the broad experience in law and life that make a good justice.

A 54-year-old graduate of Princeton and of Yale Law School, Sotomayor would be the first Hispanic justice on the court if confirmed. She'd be the third woman on the high court, joining current Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Sotomayor would succeed Justice David Souter, who's retiring at the end of the 2008-2009 term. A former federal prosecutor and trial court judge, Sotomayor has been a reliably liberal voice on the New York-based 2nd Circuit since she joined the appellate court in 1998.

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