(V.I. Consortium) ST. CROIX — U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Sonya Sotomayor, above, who was invited to the territory by the District Court of the Virgin Islands and is hosting events on St. Thomas and St. Croix dubbed, “An Evening with the Honorable Sonya Sotomayor”, spoke to a packed room at the Juan F. Luis Hospital Cardiac Center on Wednesday night, mostly speaking about her journey to the Supreme Court of the United States after being nominated by President Barack Obama.
The justice did not answer political questions, as District Court Judge Curtis Gomez warned from the onset of the event that Justice Sotomayor would not speak on any matters ongoing or matters that may come before the court. But she did respond to a question relative to the inability of residents of the U.S. Virgin Islands to vote for president of the United States.
Justice Sotomayor explained that when the founding fathers of the U.S. created the Constitution, the document only allowed for states to participate in the electoral process. The U.S. territories are not states, and therefore it would take a constitutional amendment to change the current process, she said.
The issue has been a vexing one for citizens of U.S. territories, and the quest for what many call full citizenship has seen victories as well as setbacks.