Sonia Sotomayor has acknowledged that "fidelity to the law" was a key attribute of A Supreme Court Judge. That is basically what we wanted to hear.
Everyone has a "frame of reference." That includes judges. The better ones usually put aside their frames of reference and rule as strictly as possible on the merits of the case. That is something we expect from few other professionals, except perhaps "umpires" and "referees" in sports.
There are some unusual circumstances where a broader understanding is necessary. That was, presumably Sotomayor's appeal to Obama; that she would things from his own unusual perspective, a self-made member of a minority, in hihgh office, who has not forgotten his'her past.
Such occasions are rare, however. More conventional situations require "strict construction." The main problem we've had with the Obama presidency is its inclination to supersede the rule of law in support of some supposedly higher aims. That's not a good idea. Sotomayor appears to have grown in her understanding of this fact. Hpefully the rest of the Obama adminsitration will do the same.