Justice Sotomayor under fire for Oregon book hawking

By Taxpayer Association of Oregon

The Associated Press is reporting that Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor used her official, government-paid Supreme Court staff to sell her books through public libraries and universities across the U.S.  This included at an event hosted by Oregon’s Multnomah County Library and Portland Community College which put up thousands of tax dollars for the event and her books.


The AP described what happened in Oregon when Sotomayor went on her book tour for Just Ask:

“… library and community college officials in Portland, Oregon, jumped at the chance to host an event.They put in long hours and accommodated the shifting requests of Sotomayor’s court staff. Then, as the public cost of hosting the event soared almost tenfold, a Sotomayor aide emailed with a different, urgent concern: She said the organizers did not buy enough copies of the justice’s book, which attendees had to purchase ….Sotomayor’s publisher, Penguin Random House, also has played a role in organizing her talks, in some cases pressing public institutions to commit to buying a specific number of copies or requesting that attendees purchase books to obtain tickets, emails show. The publisher has had several matters before the court in which Sotomayor did not recuse herself …  Officials committed to spending $1,000 to host the event. Co-host Multnomah County Library pledged an additional $1,500″

The AP goes on to say that event costs rose to $20,000!!!  You can read the AP’s full report here.

An MSNBC editor made this point “First, event logistics should be the responsibility of the book publisher, not Sotomayor or her staff members (who are paid to help her serve as a justice, not peddle her books). Second, records published by the AP indicate that staffers weren’t just trying to manage audience expectations; they were trying to hawk as many books as possible.”

Fox News noted, “…when Michigan State University asked Sotomayor to come to campus and spent more than $100,000 on copies of her memoir, “My Beloved World,” to distribute to incoming first-year students. The books were shipped to the Supreme Court, where copies were taken to her chambers by court workers and signed by her before being sent to the school.”

This is no small amount since Sotomayor has made nearly four million dollars on her works.

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