Once again, my best suggestion for dramatizing Ricci v. DeStefano is for the Republican senators to call Mayor John DeStefano of New Haven as a hostile witness.
The witness lists released today includes Frank Ricci and Ben Vargas, the Hispanic plaintiff in the suit who was violently assaulted and knocked unconscious in 2004 in a racial assault for standing up for his legal rights. But no mayor of New Haven.
The Democrats are calling as witnesses the mayor of New York and a baseball player, whose most famous legal experience was getting sued for $1.8 million by three women to whom he exposed himself while in the bullpen.
Here are a few of my questions for Judge Sotomayor:
- Much as Chief Justice John Roberts asked during oral arguments over Ricci… Can you assure us, Judge Sotomayor, that your decision in Ricci for the City of New Haven would have been the same if minority firefighters scored highest on this test in disproportionate numbers, and the City said, "We don't like that result, we think there should be more whites on the fire department, and so we're going to throw the test out?"
- On the South Wall of the Supreme Court Building’s courtroom are carvings of the "great lawgivers of history." The second earliest lawgiver depicted is Hammurabi, king of Babylon, who is honored for carving the laws in stone and putting them up in public—which meant that even the king couldn’t change the laws after the fact to suit his convenience. Why should Mayor DeStefano enjoy the privilege that King Hammurabi denied himself: to see what the final score turned out to be, then change the rules of the game?
- In the Obama Administration’s friend of the court brief to the Supreme Court on the Ricci case, the Obama Administration called for your decision for summary judgment in favor of Mayor DeStefano to be overturned and the Ricci case to be remanded to local district court for retrial on the facts. Why did you vote for a more extremist outcome than the Obama Administration later called for?