LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - After weeks of speculation President Obama finally announced his choice to replace retiring supreme court justice, David Souter. If confirmed, Judge Sonia Sotomayor would be the first Hispanic Supreme Court justice and the third woman to serve on the high court.
"I am an ordinary person who has been blessed with extraordinary opportunities and experiences," said Judge Sotomayor. "Today is one of those experiences."
It's a historic moment that had most Hispanics glued to the TV.
"I'm very proud because she's a woman and she's a Hispanic," exclaimed Alma Elizalde, a Kilgore resident. "So, that's a lot of impact on Hispanics."
"I thought, 'Well, there's some Hispanic blood up in the White House,'" laughed Mary Smith, a Hispanic State Farm Insurance sales representative.
From growing up in the New York projects to graduating from Princeton and Yale law, Judge Sotomayor accepted her U.S. Supreme Court nomination with the deepest of gratitude.
"Thank you Mr. President for the most humbling moment of my life," said Sotomayor.
"You want a court that's reflective all of the whole America and I think we're getting to that point where it's going to be," said Jose Sanchez, one on East Texas' top Hispanic attorneys. "[With] me being Latino, I always wanted to see a Latino in the Supreme Court. I'm sure there's a lot of Latinos that are lawyers, that are females and it's going to encourage them to continue there studies and one day they can be at Supreme Court."
For Smith, who lives in Longview, this nomination poses a question to her grandchildren.
"Why should anything hold you back, you know," said Smith. "Look at this lady. Puerto Rico and she..wow..wow is way up there. It's wonderful! I think it's time for the women to step up to the plate...especially those that qualify. In my mind, she's 100% qualified."
"Finally a Hispanic...finally a Hispanic is up there," she exclaimed. "We're moving up!"
Republican Senators are reacting cautiously to the president's choice. They say they want to be sure Judge Sotomayor understands the need to be impartial, and not an activist judge.