"Sotomayor’s Rulings Are Exhaustive but Often Narrow ">, NYT, Adam Liptak:
Judge Sotomayor’s six years on the trial court and more than a decade on the Second Circuit probably confirmed those intuitions, in part because of the idiosyncratic dockets of the federal courts in New York. They hear many important cases involving business, securities, employment, white-collar crime and immigration. But they do not regularly confront the great issues of the day.
Because everyone knows that securities law is boring local concern of Manhattanites and, on a national level, pretty trivial; that's been one of the great lessons of the last year, right? And the prosecution of (real or alleged) white-collar crime on Wall Street has sure never been newsworthy. And there's nothing morally weighty in immigration law, or anything. Not like the exciting Supreme Court where one gets to decide whether a requirement that strippers wear pasties infringes on the right of free speech.
What on earth can this mean-- that only constitutional law offers Great Issues? That only abortion and gay marriage count? Note: speculation on my part; he doesn't name those issues. I just don't know how one can write that list of things the Second Circuit's docket centers on and then dismiss it in the next sentence.