Sessions calls Sotomayor 'prejudiced'

Republicans came out firing at this morning's confirmation hearings for Sonia Sotomayor, as Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), the ranking member of the Judiciary Committee, accused Sotomayor of being prejudiced.

Citing a controversial racial bias case in which a fire department discarded the results of a qualifying test when black firefighters scored too low, Sessions said Sotomayor was biased in favor of the minority employees.

"It seems to me that in [Ricci v. DeStefano], Judge Sotomayor's empathy for one group of firefighters turned out to be prejudice against the others," Sessions said.

But Sessions's attack wasn't confined to the Ricci v. DeStefano case. The Alabama Republican indicted Sotomayor's entire philosophy as based on non-judicial factors.

"Call it empathy, call it prejudice, or call it sympathy, but whatever it is, it is not law. In truth it is more akin to politics. And politics has no place in the courtroom," Sessions said.

Sessions statement is a clear sign that Republicans intend to hammer away at the Ricci case when they have a chance to question Sotomayor tomorrow.

Republicans will also call two of the firefighters from that case to testify later in the week.