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White House at Ease With Nominee’s View on Privacy

Responding to concerns among abortion rights groups about Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor’s reliability as a supporter of Roe v. Wade, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs today said President Barack Obama is “comfortable— with Sotomayor’s interpretation of the Constitution.But Gibbs acknowledged that Obama did not ask Sotomayor directly whether she supports Roe v. Wade or whether she sees a right to privacy in the Constitution. And he said he was unaware whether any White House staffers had quizzed her on the same questions.Obama and Sotomayor “discussed the theory of constitutional interpretation generally, including her views on unenumerated rights in the Constitution,— Gibbs said. “He left very comfortable with her interpretation of the Constitution being very close to his, though the bulk of the conversation was devoted to her approach to judging.—“Unenumerated rights— in the Constitution is generally seen as code for the right to privacy, which is not spelled out in the Constitution but forms the basis of the Roe decision. Asked about a promise made during the campaign by Obama that he would appoint justices who back a right to privacy, Gibbs said, “I think he feels comfortable with where she is.—

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