Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader in the Senate, refused on Sunday to condemn controversial comments made by Newt Gingrich and Rush Limbaugh calling President Obama's Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor "racist."
Facing repeated questions, McConnell insisted he had "better things to do" than "be a speech police" for his fellow conservatives.
McConnell stood in contrast to two other influential Republican senators who said on Sunday that they disagreed with the racism allegations made by fellow conservatives.
Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, the highest-ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee that will oversee Sotomayor's confirmation hearing, called on Republicans to stop calling Sotomayor racist during an appearance this morning on NBC's "Meet the Press."
South Carolina Republican Lindsey Graham did express concern about Sotomayor's comments regarding the ability of a female Latina to reach a better conclusion than a white man, and called on her to apologize for the remarks, but nonetheless disagreed with Gingrich and Limbaugh:
No, they interject themselves into the debate. They've got an audience to entertain. Newt's a political commentator; I'm a United States senator... I don't think she's a racist.