- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 23, 2009

The National Rifle Association said Thursday it will count the vote to confirm Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor as part of its influential legislative scorecard on how members of Congress stand on gun-rights issues.

The politically potent gun-rights group said it is concerned about Judge Sotomayor’s stance on Second Amendment rights and her rulings as an appellate judge, including one upholding a New York law that barred a man from carrying a martial-arts weapon.

Although not expected to derail the confirmation of President Obama’s first Supreme Court pick, the decision could mean political headaches for lawmakers of both parties who often tout perfect NRA voting records in their campaigns. The NRA previously had announced its opposition to Judge Sotomayor but had not stated previously whether it would “score” the vote in its rankings.

Five Senate Republicans, including Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, have said they will vote to confirm Judge Sotomayor, and all or virtually all of the Senate’s 58 Democrats and two independents are expected to support her as well.