Senate Republicans Delay Sotomayor Vote

The Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday morning delayed its vote on Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor until next Tuesday, July 28th.

Republicans requested the delay, which was granted by Judiciary Committee chair and Vermont Democrat Patrick Leahy. It is standard practice to grant such requests.

Sotomayor's confirmation is widely expected to go through. After the Judiciary Committee vote, the full Senate is likely to follow the standard timetable of four or five days of debate before voting on the nominee.

"We all know that Judge Sotomayor will be confirmed," Leahy said, according to Newsday. "I hope that once she is passed out of this committee there will be no delay on the floor."

The full Congress is expected to vote on Sotomayor before it goes on recess August 8th.

The nominee is expected to get the backing of all 60 Senate Democrats. She will also have the support of Maine Republican Sen. Susan Collins, who Tuesday released a statement saying she has "concluded that Judge Sotomayor understands the proper rule of a judge and is committed to applying the law impartially without bias or favoritism."

Collins is the fourth Republican senator to announce support for Sotomayor. The others are Dick Lugar, Mel Martinez, and Olympia Snowe.

Also Tuesday, NARAL ProChoice America, the abortion-rights group, announced that it is endorsing the nominee. The Associated Press reports that the group cited what it sees as Sotomayor's support for privacy rights, including the right to choose to terminate a pregnancy.