Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), dove head-first into the personal when it was his turn to pepper Judge Sonia Sotomayor with questions, reading from anonymous listings in the Almanac of the Federal Judiciary.
"When you look at the evaluation of the judges on the second circuit you stand out like a sore thumb in terms of your temperament," said the South Carolina Republican, who went on to call Sotomayor a "bully."
The Obama Supreme Court pick seemed generally rattled by the line of questioning.
"I do ask tough questions at oral argument," she responded, before Graham cut her off. "Are you the only one who asks questions at oral argument?" he asked.
"No," Sotomayor replied. "Not at all."
Finally Graham, who repeated that he liked Sotomayor personally and could end up voting for her confirmation, got even blunter. "Do you think you have a temperament problem?" he asked.
"No sir," Sotomayor replied. "I can only talk about what I know about the relationship with the judges of my court and the lawyers who appear regularly before our circuit. And I believe my reputation is such that I ask the tough question but I do it evenly to both sides."
As Ian Millhiser, a Legal Research Analyst with the liberal-leaning Center for American Progress Action Fund, points out, Graham didn't publicly object to two other judges with reputations for being a bit brash: Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Antonin Scalia.
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