WASHINGTON — Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor broke her ankle Monday morning in an airport stumble, then boarded her flight as scheduled and made the roughly hourlong trip to Washington to meet with senators who will vote on her confirmation.
The federal judge, who has been keeping up a busy set of appointments on Capitol Hill, tripped at New York's LaGuardia Airport and suffered a small fracture to her right ankle, the White House said.
She was keeping her six appointments with senators despite the injury. She entered the Capitol for a meeting with Sen. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, on crutches, wearing a white cast covered at the foot with a black soft bootie. Asked how she was feeling, Sotomayor said, "I feel fine, thank you."
Sotomayor has set a relentless pace since her Capitol Hill debut last week. By day's end Monday, she will have met with one-third of the Senate in just four days of visits.
The White House is pressing for her quick confirmation, and Sotomayor wasn't pausing much for distractions, even her own trip-up. She even stopped at the White House Monday after her arrival in Washington, before heading to a local medical office for an X-ray.
The George Washington University Medical Faculty Associates treated and released her, according to a White House statement.
Sotomayor drew praise Monday former first lady Laura Bush, who said she was pleased President Barack Obama nominated a woman for the Supreme Court.
"I think she sounds like a very interesting and good nominee," Bush said of Sotomayor. She said on ABC's "Good Morning America" that, "as a woman, I'm proud that there might be another woman on the court. I wish her well."
Talk show host Rush Limbaugh wasted no time in making a joke out of the accident. "I hope [Sotomayor] can find a wise Latina doctor to set that ankle as opposed to an average white doctor," he cracked. Later added, "Would a white male judge have fractured his ankle in the same circumstances?"
Associated Press Writer Ann Sanner contributed to this report.