Bush 41 is making all kinds of news today. In addition to skydiving to celebrate his birthday, he's also "leaping" to the defense of Sonia SotomayorSonia SotomayorSupreme Court grants Trump request to halt 2020 census Amy Coney Barrett tells Senate panel she signed ad decrying Roe v. Wade as 'infamous' Supreme Court hears landmark B copyright fight between Oracle, Google MORE.

The elder Bush, who nominated Sotomayor to be a federal judge in 1991, said conservatives should back off claims that the nominee is a racist.

"And she was called by somebody a racist once," Bush told CNN. "That's not right. I mean that's not fair. It doesn't help the process. You're out there name-calling. So let them decide who they want to vote for and get on with it."

Recent polls indicate that voters are wary of heated rhetoric against Sotomayor, suggesting GOP may face a backlash if Senate Republicans are perceived to be making unfair attacks on Sotomayor.