Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.) came to the defense of Sonia SotomayorSonia SotomayorJudge whose son was killed by gunman says Sotomayor also targeted A powerful tool to take on the Supreme Court — if Democrats use it right Supreme Court grants Alabama death row inmate's request for pastor MORE today, saying he doesn't hold her "wise Latina" remarks against her. In fact, he supports them.

"For someone who is of Latin background, personally, I understand what she is trying to say," Martinez said after meeting with Sotomayor today. "Which is, the richness of her experience forms who she is. It forms who I am."

I believe Martinez is the first Republican senator to actively defend Sotomayor. This could be one of those symbolic turning points.

Martinez also said he expects Sotomayor to be confirmed "with pretty good numbers."