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Bush names Harriet Miers to Supreme Court
October 3, 2005 5:37 AM   Subscribe

Bush nominates Harriet Miers Bush has nominated Harriet Miers to replace Justice O'Connor. The first woman elected to the Texas Bar, she was Bush's personal attorney in Texas, and has served as Counsel to the President since Feb, 2005.

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posted by gleenyc (189 comments total)

 
She must be really qualified. Bush would never just nominate one of his cronies.
posted by Pollomacho at 5:41 AM on October 3, 2005


What the hell? She has NO judicial experience? I've been going about my career all wrong - instead of starting in tech support I should have been CEO of IBM, I guess.

I'm not alone in thinking that some sort of job experience as a judge would be a good thing before becoming a Supreme Court justice, am I?
posted by Dipsomaniac at 5:43 AM on October 3, 2005


who? this reminds me of bush's choice for vice president some awful 5+ years ago - and we all know how that turned out.
posted by specialk420 at 5:46 AM on October 3, 2005


Not really -- Statistically, Supreme Court justices with zero judicial experience isn't such a rare thing. And there's not really a correlation between good justices and prior bench appointments.

That said, coming off the thing with "Brownie", this is a really dumb idea. Ballsy, but dumb.
posted by parliboy at 5:46 AM on October 3, 2005


Yeah!

What was wrong with the torture guy?

Oh... yeah...
posted by jpburns at 5:47 AM on October 3, 2005


It's actually quite savvy, given the current climate in which people answer none of the real questions during their confirmation hearings, we'll know nothing about her. It will be hard to offer substantive criticisms, from either the right or the left, without something substantive to go on.
posted by OmieWise at 5:48 AM on October 3, 2005


Another tight-lipped, unmarried, fiercely loyal female crony with no experience. I wonder what Miers' nickname is behind closed doors?

The woman President Bush appointed this week as White House counsel, Harriet Miers, is hardly known in Washington but has a history in Texas of handling years of scandal at the state's lottery commission. The president, who once retained her as his personal lawyer, described her in 1996 as 'a pit bull in Size 6 shoes.' [...]

'She's the kind of person you want in your corner when all the chips are being played,' said one friend, Joseph M. Allbaugh, former director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. [...]

Ms. Miers, 59, currently serves as deputy chief of staff for policy and assistant to the president. She has rarely, if ever, talked to reporters since arriving in Washington in 2001, and she declined a request for an interview on Friday.

[...]

In 2001, Mr. Bush brought Ms. Miers to Washington with him as his staff secretary, a little known but powerful job in which she handled much of the paper flow to the president. Ms. Miers is a regular guest at Camp David and is often the only woman who accompanies Mr. Bush and male staff members in long brush-cutting and cedar-clearing sessions at the president's ranch.

[...]

'When it comes to cross-examination,' Mr. Bush said then, 'she can fillet better than Mrs. Paul.'

-- Elizabeth Bumiller, NYT
posted by digaman at 5:53 AM on October 3, 2005


Bush is certainly buying a lot of judicial insurance, should things get dicey in the war-crimes department.
posted by digaman at 5:55 AM on October 3, 2005


[Harriet Mier's] office also takes the lead in vetting and recommending candidates for the federal judiciary, all the way up to the Supreme Court.

Uhh..the latest recommendation went something like 'Pick me! Pick me!'
posted by Dipsomaniac at 5:56 AM on October 3, 2005


Unexpectedly clever. She has no judicial history, so there are no decisions to criticize. Furthermore, she's not one of the candidates the Dems were expecting, so they'll be less prepared for a fight. Their best bet now is to dig through her professional history and see if they can find anything ugly.
posted by unreason at 5:56 AM on October 3, 2005


a pit bull in Size 6 shoes

read: John Bolton in a dress.
posted by three blind mice at 5:57 AM on October 3, 2005


Word from Attytood is that she knows where the skeletons are in the GW national guard service coverup, and was involved in a major scandal while overseeing the Lottery Comission in Texas.
posted by VulcanMike at 5:59 AM on October 3, 2005



http://frum.nationalreview.com/archives/09292005.asp#077899


Apparently, she thinks Bush is the most brilliant man she's ever met. So there's that...
posted by Optamystic at 6:02 AM on October 3, 2005


Rehnquist had never been a judge when he was appointed an Associate Justice in 1972 (source).

And unreason is right on the tactical cleverness of the appointment - she's the woman who wasn't there.
posted by athenian at 6:03 AM on October 3, 2005


I'm wondering if this is a ploy to make the real judicial candidate seem reasonable?
posted by Ryvar at 6:04 AM on October 3, 2005


She's a Bush crony, very very loyal, and no real paper trail--again. Miers Cheneyed herself.

And she was the person who picked Roberts (and "lost" those papers).

I hear she's a former Exodus International (the "ex-gays") board member.
posted by amberglow at 6:04 AM on October 3, 2005


Actually the best strategy the Dems could bring to the table regarding this nominee is to cast her instantly as another Bush crony Ala Michael Brown. Start hammering on her lack of judicial experience, her inner-circle status, and her lack of a legal-record.
posted by Chrischris at 6:05 AM on October 3, 2005


big Kos diary already on her
posted by amberglow at 6:07 AM on October 3, 2005


bush crony, bush crony, bush crony.

the mantra is written. let's hope america wakes up and demands some light be shone on these lizards emerging from dark dank places.
posted by specialk420 at 6:09 AM on October 3, 2005


I'm not convinced that this isn't a head fake after all - that Bush will let her twist in the confirmation battles for a while, then withdraw her name and offer up a true rabid right-winger to appease his base, set off the nuclear option in the Senate, and divert all attention from his administration's legal problems.--from that Kos thread
posted by amberglow at 6:10 AM on October 3, 2005


Interesting choice of a candidate. She gave money to Democrats in 1988: specifically Gore's primary, Lloyd Bentsen, and the DNC. The DNC contribution came a few days before election day, meaning she gave money to help defeat Bush Sr.

There's some interesting and heated commentary at RedState and The Corner.

Looks like there might be a chance of an unholy alliance between the conservatives and the Kossacks to defeat this nominee. If the various conservative blogs I've been reading are an accurate representation of the Republican base, then Bush has managed to completely alienate them. Some far right bloggers were making jokes about "cronyism" and statements about leaving this failed president to fend for himself. If you stripped away the context, you'd almost think the comments were on Kos or Atrios.

So this nomination continues the self-destructive tendencies of the White House. The Democrats and moderates are already alienated. Now, the base is well on their way to abandoning them too. At least W still has Rove.
posted by pandaharma at 6:11 AM on October 3, 2005


"You're doing a great job there, Miersie...."
posted by darren at 6:15 AM on October 3, 2005


whitehouse.gov

Transcript of a recent chat session.
posted by Optamystic at 6:15 AM on October 3, 2005


I'm wondering if this is a ploy to make the real judicial candidate seem reasonable?

I'm really confused as to how people keep suggesting this. In what way, exactly, is this not indicative of most of Bush's other traits? He's notorious for loyalty and selective in his cronies; that he picked someone almost the exact same way he "picked" his running mate shouldn't be a surprise at all.

If anything, this seems like a gambit on the punditry side- the only way I can see this good for Bush and bad for his opponents is if the Democrats actually go full-bore against this woman. It feels like the worst thing for Bush at this point would be to confirm Miers quickly and get back to all his scandals.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:16 AM on October 3, 2005


amberglow, I think that Exodus International tie-in may be wrong. Is it not Exodus Ministries, which is at least not an "ex-gay" scam?

I almost had a heart attack when I read your post -- not that Miers is good news.
posted by digaman at 6:16 AM on October 3, 2005


OMG

I think that in our shock, none of thought of the proper emergency response. Did anyone send paramedics over to Coulter's?


The first hilarious comment at the top of the redstate.org page.
posted by OmieWise at 6:19 AM on October 3, 2005


I think Bush is wary to nominate the nuclear ultra-rabid candidate now, what with his ratings in the toilet. But yeah, his base of christian conservatives were expecting red meat with this nomination. They must be pissed now.
posted by fungible at 6:19 AM on October 3, 2005


Looks like there might be a chance of an unholy alliance between the conservatives and the Kossacks to defeat this nominee.

There's a chance I might win the lottery, too. Liberals would be insane to fight hard given this candidate; it's practically a given that if the Dems actually manage to block a nominee the replacement would almost be a guaranteed lock to get in; there's no way two in a row would be stopped.

He's nominated Miers and conservatives are mad at him. He won't nominate anyone to the left of her, so with the nomination official Bush has nothing to lose and everything to gain by letting liberals take the news off all the other crap he's doing with the end result of getting an even better pick in his mindset.

This can be either the best or worst thing ever for Democrats depending on how they act. Personally, I think they should take this as a gift and make sure Souter has the best doctors in the world around him at all times, because if another Justice goes, we are all proper fucked.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:21 AM on October 3, 2005


I'm not convinced that this isn't a head fake after all - that Bush will let her twist in the confirmation battles for a while, then withdraw her name and offer up a true rabid right-winger to appease his base, set off the nuclear option in the Senate, and divert all attention from his administration's legal problems.

Bush doesn't need to pander to the religious right anymore, but Sentate Republicans certainly need too. If there's any head fake here it is one where Bush appoints someone not demonstrably frothing mouth conservative, the Senate comes to the rescue of family values, stands up to the increasingly unpopular head of the party and makes that defiance a plank of the 2006 Senate race.

The Republican Senate does not approve her. Bush then gets to then appoint the fire breathing right winger he really wants. Everyone wins. (Liberty looses, but since she is already lost this is just the formality.)
posted by three blind mice at 6:22 AM on October 3, 2005


Mother of God. From that White House chat:


Rod, from Roanoke, VA writes:
This is not so much a question as it is a vote of support for Mr. Bush.

My wife and I just wanted to thank the Presdent for all his hard work and his service to our country for the last four years.

In September of 2001, the nation was frightened, almost frozen with fear, after the events of September 11th. President Bush's calm, strong leadership and resolve got us all through, and made us see the heroes that reside inside each of us. That is the mark of a true leader.

Mr. Bush has our full support and confidence in the difficult,often thankless job he does for our nation.

Thanks and god bless,
----

Harriet Miers
Thanks for your comments, Rod. I appreciate the President's calm, strong leadership also. He is a great leader!

-----

Caleb, from California writes:
Dear Harriet,With the 911 Commission report stating there was no linkable evidence between Sept. 11th and Iraq, why are the two often grouped together? Shouldn't they be considered two separate fights?

Thanks.

Harriet Miers
Hello, Caleb. I believe you must be referring to some language in the Report that can be misread. Like the Administration, the Commission did not find evidence that, before 9/11, these long-established ties between Iraq and al Qaeda had evolved into a "collaborative operational relationship" for "carrying out attacks against the United States." (chapter 2, S 2.5, page 66) However, the Commission's report catalogs some of the extensive contacts between Iraq and al Qaeda. Here are some: "Bin Ladin was also willing to explore possibilities for cooperation with Iraq." (chapter 2, S 2.4, page 61) Saddam's regime "tolerated and may have even helped" al Qaeda sponsored groups in northern Iraq including Ansar al-Islam, a group tied to senior al Qaeda associate Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who continues to be responsible for terrorist attacks inside Iraq today. (chapter 2, S 2.4, page 61) "Bin Ladin himself met with a senior Iraqi intelligence officer in Khartoum in late 1994 or early 1995." (chapter 2, S 2.4, page 61) Bin Ladin proposed cooperation to Saddam Hussein's regime in 1997 but was rebuffed. "In mid-1998, the situation reversed: it was Iraq that reportedly took the initiative" during a time of "intensifying U.S. pressure." (chapter 2, S 2.5, page 66) The Commission report documents a March 1998 visit to Iraq by two al Qaeda members to meet with Iraqi intelligence. It also documents a July 1998 Iraqi delegation that traveled to Afghanistan to meet first with the Taliban and then with Bin Ladin. (chapter 2, S 2.5, page 66) Iraqi officials offered Bin Ladin "a safe haven in Iraq" in 1999. (chapter 2, S 2.5, page 66) The scope of the Commission's review limits the reporting on post-9/11 events, such as the activities of Zarqawi and his associates in Baghdad. So, no, I don't think they should be considered separately. They are both part of the War on Terror.

posted by digaman at 6:23 AM on October 3, 2005


i'm not sure, diga--i saw it on Kos. i guess it'll be cleared up one way or another.
posted by amberglow at 6:24 AM on October 3, 2005


"Nor is it safe for the president's conservative supporters to defer to the president's judgment and say, "Well, he must know best." The record shows I fear that the president's judgment has always been at its worst on personnel matters.

The president has only very rarely sought out the best person for the job."


David Frum is pissed. Sometimes it just sucks to be the put-upon party in power.
posted by OmieWise at 6:25 AM on October 3, 2005


C'mon, she cuts brush, what could be so bad? America loves a brush cutter.
posted by caddis at 6:25 AM on October 3, 2005


from SCOTUSblog: ... I have no view on whether she should be confirmed (it's simply too early to say), but will go out on a limb and predict that she will be rejected by the Senate. In my view, Justice O'Connor will still be sitting on the Court on January 1, 2006.
posted by amberglow at 6:28 AM on October 3, 2005


yup, three blind--the more i think about it, the more i think that's it. Everything is political with them. It'd make the GOP Senate look strong and independent of Bush.
posted by amberglow at 6:30 AM on October 3, 2005


I really have no idea why any Democrat shows up to work with these criminal dicatators in charge. Grow a spine Democrats, shut down the fucking government! How much fucking corruption do we have to witness before enough is enough? The judiciary is the only branch of government not under this fascist dicatator's control. This is the last chance we have to stop this theocratic corporate takeover of the United States. Appoint another Bush nominee and you can all say goodbye to any federal safety net. Have three kids and your husband dies in a car accident? Tough luck - fuck you says the government. Get raped by your uncle - fuck you says the government you better have the baby -oh and don't expect a dime after you do - better get religion, oh and choose that religion wisely because they are not all created equal when it comes to government funding.
posted by any major dude at 6:30 AM on October 3, 2005


The Kossacks would automatically oppose any Bush nominee, even if the nominee was a transgendered lesbian who was a lawyer for NARAL. So they'll find a reason to object to Miers. And they'll be in the fine company of the National Review and RedState.

Fortunately, they won't have much effect on the process. The conservative blogs have some rumblings about unsubstantiated rumors that Miers is pro-choice. If this is true, then Miers is definitely the best we will get from this President and we should support this nominee.
posted by pandaharma at 6:31 AM on October 3, 2005


three blind mice writes "Bush doesn't need to pander to the religious right anymore, but Sentate Republicans certainly need too. If there's any head fake here it is one where Bush appoints someone not demonstrably frothing mouth conservative, the Senate comes to the rescue of family values, stands up to the increasingly unpopular head of the party and makes that defiance a plank of the 2006 Senate race.

"The Republican Senate does not approve her."


Where else have you seen Bush demonstrate either a desire or an ability to fall on his sword like this?
posted by OmieWise at 6:36 AM on October 3, 2005


The Kossacks would automatically oppose any Bush nominee, even if the nominee was a transgendered lesbian who was a lawyer for NARAL. So they'll find a reason to object to Miers. And they'll be in the fine company of the National Review and RedState.

I always thought Democratic Underground was the analog for NR and RedState. Where does AmericaBlog rank? Atrios? Talking Points Memo? MyDD? Think Progress?
posted by VulcanMike at 6:46 AM on October 3, 2005


Single, no kids, "a pit bull in size 6 shoes." Um, could part of the right-wing pundits' hesitancy be a fear* that Miers is a lesbian?

*or inside-the-Beltline knowledge of one of those "open secrets" the press likes to keep to itself
posted by mediareport at 6:48 AM on October 3, 2005


The conservative blogs have some rumblings about unsubstantiated rumors that Miers is pro-choice. If this is true, then Miers is definitely the best we will get from this President and we should support this nominee.

I know lots of idiots that are pro-choice. That doesn't mean they would be good supremes.
posted by srboisvert at 6:57 AM on October 3, 2005


The conservative blogs have some rumblings about unsubstantiated rumors that Miers is pro-choice. If this is true, then Miers is definitely the best we will get from this President and we should support this nominee.

FFS, I would think that your support of someone to the highest court in the land would hinge on something other than their stance on abortion. Canard.
posted by mkultra at 7:19 AM on October 3, 2005


Well, fuck.

We small-government types have calmly stood by as GWB has spent, spent, and spent, rationalizing that Kerry or Gore would have spent just as much. We've watched him make war against liberty, hoping that things would find a way to undo themselves. We've watched him step up the War on Porn for no reason whatsoever. We've watched him spit upon Ricardo's grave, assuming it was just a temporary ploy for a few swing-state votes. And, for the most part, we (Goldwater Conservatives) have kept our displeasure to a grumble. For our unenthusiastic fealty, we've been rewarded not with Epstein or JRB, but with an intellectual lightweight.

Former Head of the Texas Lottery Commission? Are you fucking kidding me?
posted by Kwantsar at 7:30 AM on October 3, 2005


So Bush is going to shake the notion that he relies on everyone within arm's range by nominating his spinster loyalist? I remember reading about his reshuffling of cabinet. He's running out of 'good folks'.

Personally, I really think she's a shoo-in, unless there's a real big nasty detail from the commission overseeing elections.
NPR spun it as "she really performed well there, cleaning up after a scandal broke out..." really, it's just a preposition error: after vs in.

I just hope the news agencies split of a proportional amount of reporters for this. There's so much blood in the water, everyone can have a big story.

Is there an online betting site for which network dedicates the most time to this? Fox to win, ABC, NBC to show.
posted by Busithoth at 7:34 AM on October 3, 2005


At the outset, this is a bad pick for the Supreme Court. I have no idea what kind of judge she would ultimately be, but at this point in time, it looks as though Bush has failed in this selection. I am a firm believer that we shouldn't know how a judge will vote; the selection process shouldn't be a results test. The process should be to select the most capable and qualified potential jurist in the country; it should be a question of who has the most rigorous intellect, most powerful mind, the best understanding for the importance of the position. And by that standard and by what I know of Miers, she fails.

She has been active in the Dallas Bar for quite awhile. I have seen her speak at CLE's and Bar events. I'm pretty sure that I probably have been to some Christmas parties or cocktails events with her.... though to be honest, I don't really recall because the thing about Harriet Miers is that she is remarkably un-remarkable. She isn't anywhere close to being the most distinguished or capable in the Dallas Bar, so I have no idea how she got picked to the Supreme Court which should be reserved for the most distinguished in the country.

I don't really have a dog in the Supreme Court fight. I just think we need the most intellectual people who are respectful of their purpose; not smart people who are their for their own purposes or a political purpose, but smart people who are their to do their job as properly understood (results be damned) and are proud of the solemn duty they hold. I eschew all the discussion of how a judge will vote on certain issues because that isn't the point. So this Miers pick is weak not because neither liberals or conservatives know how she will vote (indeed, that might be the one virtue of this pick), but it is weak because Miers isn't highly qualified.

My guess is that this pick will fail to be confirmed. My best guess isn't that it will fail by a losing vote. My guess is that the country and the congress will see that she is unremarkable. Is she smart? Sure. Is she truly brillant? No. Does she have some good credentials? Sure. Is she highly qualified to be a Supreme Court justice? No. After people look closely at her, there will be little support for her nomination and some possible nastiness based on her past antics, and she will ultimately withdraw it (and probably at Bush's suggestion).

Bush screwed up here. I wonder what the thought process was. I am not saying she can't be a great justice---perhaps in the long run she could prove to be one of the best---but at the outset, she certainly doesn't have the chops that a Supreme Court Justice should have, in my opinion.
posted by dios at 7:38 AM on October 3, 2005


I mean no disrespect or insult here, but I just plain never thought I would say this in this thread.

I agree completely with dios.
posted by Pollomacho at 7:44 AM on October 3, 2005


I see that the smearing campaign has already started. What a clever touch to associate her with Michael Brown, however unfair that is.
posted by gyc at 7:44 AM on October 3, 2005


To reiterate:


"In the White House that hero worshipped the president, Miers was distinguished by the intensity of her zeal: She once told me that the president was the most brilliant man she had ever met."

Brilliant... what? Statesman? Much of the world hates us now. Leader? The country is more desperately divided than at any time I can remember (I'm 47). Commander in chief? Talk to anybody who just came back from Iraq -- I do. Intellectual? LOL, as they say. Speaker? He can barely wrangle up an English sentence.

One really has to wonder what criterion the next Supreme Court justice had in her mind.
posted by digaman at 7:47 AM on October 3, 2005


Aside from all the assiduous comments; none of us, who oppose or question this inept nomination, will or can do a damn thing about it.

That's especially puzzling, since it includes me.

A quick Google search brings up lot of interesting bits, for example:

"It's worth noting that the Texas Lottery Commission was formerly mismanaged by the current White House Counsel, Harriet Miers."


And Roberts praises her during his swearing in on September 29th, 2005:

"I benefited greatly from the wisdom, judgment and plain hard work of Ed Gillespie, Senator Thompson, Harriet Miers, Bill Kelley and everyone on the team."


There's a nod to Ed Gillespie known as "Enron Ed". And there's that "hard work" again.

* * *

Bush is a terrible train wreck that keeps happening over and over again. Worst part: he's not on it.

America and the world gets to watch and wonder what the long-term consequences these presidential decisions will bring.

I'd really like to do a strong LSD session with any willing Bush supporters.

Not that that would help.
posted by rmmcclay at 7:48 AM on October 3, 2005


Just once I would like to see a non-lawyer nominated.

(I'm actually not kidding, but anyone who cares to take this as a setup line should feel free to do so.)
posted by IndigoJones at 7:51 AM on October 3, 2005


After reading some of the comments, here are two quick thoughts:

1. The lack of judicial experience is not dispositive of the issue. Yes, there have been plenty of SCJs that didn't have judicial experience, so that isn't why she isn't qualified. She isn't qualified because she may not really have the chops to be a circuit judge. Yes, she was head of Locke Purnell, but is largely because she worked hard to be Maury Purnell's pick. (Maybe she is really good at that, and that is how she got this pick, as well).

2. The political spin on this is already scary. Roberts was a good pick because of his qualifications; not because conservatives and liberals know how he is going to vote. Likewise, the opposition to Miers should be on her qualifications, not because we don't know how she is going to vote. Trying to predict how she will vote is crazy; just as crazy as supporting a nominee because you think there is a possibility she could vote this way or that. The best you can vote for is that a qualified nominee is offered, and hope that they respect their position.

The thought that idiot conservatives would not support her because they fear she might not be conservative might join forces with idiot liberals who oppose her because they fear she might be liberal is laughable. So is transitive position.
posted by dios at 7:53 AM on October 3, 2005


One really has to wonder what criterion the next Supreme Court justice had in her mind.

Of all the laudatory things one could possibly say about W, is "brilliant" really the best choice?
posted by Kwantsar at 7:54 AM on October 3, 2005


Goo. There is suppose to be some "not"s in there and other typos. My apologies.
posted by dios at 7:56 AM on October 3, 2005


gyc I don't think that's a smear. When you have an ongoing trend of a president picking people loyalty over competence, there's some cause for concern. No, she isn't Mike Brown, but I think the question is whether she qualifies as a justice in the highest court in the land, or whether she's just a Bush buddy with a law degree.

And dios, I agree. Do you think, as others have said, this might be a twist-in-the-wind tactic so he can appoint an ultraconservative instead?
posted by Happydaz at 7:58 AM on October 3, 2005


This has confirmed my suspicions: you can't swing a dead cat in DC without hitting yet another brilliant legal mind. That town must be like a smorgasbord for zombies.
posted by milkrate at 8:00 AM on October 3, 2005


Where else have you seen Bush demonstrate either a desire or an ability to fall on his sword like this?

Good point OmieWise. It occurred to me that it is unlilke Bush, but it seems so much like Karl Rove. It might be time for Rove to pull some different strings on his marionette. With his sub 40 approval rating Bush is more albatross than lame duck. With Frist backtracking on stem cell, the GOP senate needs to deliver some red meat to the religious conservatives for 2006. Conservative senators also need to distance themselves from Bush's history of deficit spending and unprecedented expansion of the size of the executive branch.

I hope I'm wrong but this appointment strikes me as cannon fodder.
posted by three blind mice at 8:04 AM on October 3, 2005


dios echoes my own thoughts on this. First things I asked when I heard from my fiancee who was chosen as the nominee were "does she have judicial experience?" and "is she a scholar or does she at least write about the law?" (I had never heard of her before). We'll see if the Senate can get over their pet issues and actually have the balls to look at her qualifications. I think she is a long ways from the best person for the job based just on that.
posted by Eekacat at 8:06 AM on October 3, 2005


as white house council, i bet she claims that all documents she has created have client/lawyer privilege. so basically bush can get her appointed, and then her and roberts can go to town on freedom. i love living in the country. but you know the coming dark ages for freedom will only make us love it all the more when we get it back in 50 years...unless global warming kills us all first
posted by stilgar at 8:08 AM on October 3, 2005


Excuse my ignorance here, but I'm going to ask a possibly silly question. She was Bush's Staff Secretary. Is that the equivalent of Mrs. Landingham on The West Wing?
posted by chiababe at 8:12 AM on October 3, 2005


Whatever you think of Rove, there's no reason to suspect that he'd sacrifice Bush's reputation for some hidden conservative agenda. And losing this fight would clearly hurt Bush's popularity.

I don't really get this nomination, but I'm sure that they've thought through the politics of it. Since she has no judicial decisions, everything she's written would have been as an advocate, which should mean that there's no way to tell where she stands on anything. And I would guess that a considerable amount of what she's written will simply not be released because of executive privilege.

While I would normally agree that you should look for the sharpest legal mind around, I think that it's disingenuous to think that such people won't have a well-defined ideology and that you won't be able to tell how they'll vote on most issues. There are brilliant legal minds from all over the political spectrum, so you can choose right, center, or left, but I'm not sure how many there are who can't be categorized.

From a pragmatic viewpoint, I think that the liberals probably can't expect to do any better than someone without any judicial record. If the person has a record, the right is going to make sure that it's the record they want to see. Better a complete unknown than someone you know won't decide cases your way.
posted by anapestic at 8:14 AM on October 3, 2005


I wonder if a nomination CAN fail for anything less then scandal? I wholeheartedly agree we should look at the qualifications and intellectual capacity/honesty/integrity and make the decision based on those criteria (in which case this nomination seems to be somewhat lacking), but will congress vote to disallow based on unremarkability. or do they need an active reason? guess we shall see.
posted by edgeways at 8:15 AM on October 3, 2005


Better a complete unknown than someone you know won't decide cases your way.

Alternatively: better the devil you know than the devil you don't.
posted by sonofsamiam at 8:16 AM on October 3, 2005


And dios, I agree. Do you think, as others have said, this might be a twist-in-the-wind tactic so he can appoint an ultraconservative instead?
posted by Happydaz at 9:58 AM CST on October 3


Happydaz, that position has the virtue of at least making some sense of this nomination. One would think that the excellent selection of Roberts indicated an ability to find the best candidates, but this selection fails that test at the outset. So maybe there is something politically crass and calculated going on. Although, I would hope that Bush wouldn't use such an important thing in such a political way.

I don't really know that I or anyone can address that theory in any sort of meaningful way. We don't know the thought processes that went into this selection. So its impossible to say that this is all some fake out. The possibility exists that it might be a self-fulfilling prophecy. That is, though Bush may not have intended it at the outset, he may decide to go that route when this one isn't successful. It is possible that she was nominated in good faith (but poor discernment), that she will fail for her lack of qualifications (as I predict), and that in response, Bush nominates a supremely qualified circuit judge like Luttig. If that happens, we might get some "I told you so" from conspiracy-minded people, but it is useful to remember to not attirbute to malice what might be attributable to incompetence.

The Supreme Court has suffered severely in statute in the last several decades as it has become more and more of a political battleground as opposed to a detached body as intended by the Framers. From the fight over abortion and other culture war topics, the disgusting attacks against Robert Bork, and to the Supreme's stepping in on the Bush v. Gore issue. The Supreme Court needs to regain some of its prestige. Such a crass political maneuver would be to the discredit of the president if that is what he is doing because it would just further politicize the Court.
posted by dios at 8:16 AM on October 3, 2005


need, not as in any legal sense of the word, but as a personal justification for action
posted by edgeways at 8:18 AM on October 3, 2005


Atlantic Monthly article on lack of judicial experience (particularly trial court experience) among Supreme Court justices.
posted by duck at 8:19 AM on October 3, 2005


From a pragmatic viewpoint, I think that the liberals probably can't expect to do any better than someone without any judicial record. If the person has a record, the right is going to make sure that it's the record they want to see. Better a complete unknown than someone you know won't decide cases your way.

It's the religious right who are demanding a person with a demonstrably anti-abortion, anti-gay, "pro-family" record. Remember Ann Coulter's Souter in Roberts Clothes diatribe? Harriet Miers fails this test miserably. Her appointment is not going to mollify the religious right. They aren't satisfied by tax cuts and Haliburton's profits - they are demanding a win to the "culture war" and Bush has done very little for them.
posted by three blind mice at 8:26 AM on October 3, 2005


yeah... another everything-dios-just-said.

...even if the nominee was a transgendered lesbian who was a lawyer for NARAL...

One thing I will give Bush is that he doesn't actually care about photographic diversity either way. This is largely because he would choose a transgendered lesbian NARAL lawyer he were sure she'd tow whatever line he asked.

Were I slightly more paranoid, I'd say he knows exactly what he's doing: stacking the court for United States v. Bush.
posted by Vetinari at 8:26 AM on October 3, 2005


I wonder what Miers' nickname is behind closed doors?


Hmmm, she's not on the list.
posted by CynicalKnight at 8:28 AM on October 3, 2005


While I would normally agree that you should look for the sharpest legal mind around, I think that it's disingenuous to think that such people won't have a well-defined ideology and that you won't be able to tell how they'll vote on most issues.
posted by anapestic at 10:14 AM CST on October 3


This is silliness, with all due respect, and it belies a lack of knowledge of the Court. Too many people see the Court as just Roe v. Wade and then other things. Too often with political partisans, judicial philosophy is talked about in a liberal/conservative dichotomy as merely shorthand for the question of abortion. And armchair political analysts act as if they have a discerning view as to what results are expected by judicial philosophy.

So you say that we can always know how a judge will vote. But my guess is that you are referring to purely cultural questions. But lets test your theory:

Were you able to predict the result in Kelo?
Were you able to predict the result in the medical marijuana case?
What about some of the recent decisions on criminal procedure or maritime law?

My guess is that you will be wrong as many times you are right on the Supreme Court in discerning where judges are going to differ. They hear a lot more cases than just cultural lightning rods, and simplistic conservative/liberal analysis is frequently wrong. And that is why it is silly to try view the nominations as an outcomes-based excercize instead of looking at qualifications and disposition.
posted by dios at 8:31 AM on October 3, 2005


Appointed to a job for which you're completely unqualified? Doin' a great job, Brownie Harriet.
posted by Rothko at 8:34 AM on October 3, 2005


I don't think she will get pass the confirmation process. Wikipedia:
Miers donated money to Al Gore in 1988 she also gave $1,000 to the DNC that year. She's donated only to Republicans since . . .

Valley View Christian Church in Dallas, Texas was Miers' church from 1980 until more recent years. When pastor Ron Key was asked about Miers' views on abortion, he said, "her personal views are consistent with that of evangelical Christians... You can tell a lot about her from her decade of service in a conservative church." He also said, "We [Valley View Church] believe in the biblical approach to marriage."


So essentially I believe we see a nominee that appears to have had a "born-again" Christian experience and has been sliding more an more Right for the past 25 years. Compare Roberts: he's Conservative but does not appear to be a demagogue, a Catholic who can at least appear intellectually honest. Given how important this nomination is, I think they will need to find someone less devoted to a radical religion - and at first glance - someone who has published more and has more of an academic record; as opposed to Bush's former personal attorney who it looks has mainlymade a career in private practice.
posted by sixdifferentways at 8:40 AM on October 3, 2005


I always thought Democratic Underground was the analog for NR and RedState. Where does AmericaBlog rank? Atrios? Talking Points Memo? MyDD? Think Progress?

TPM is pretty resonable. Artrios is pretty rabid, but I like him. DailyKos is about the equivilant to LGF if you replaced "Arabs" with "Republicans."

Don't get me wrong, hating an ethnic group is far worse then hating a political party, but the vitrol on Kos is discusting. Especialy the glee they have about 'outing' gay republicans. Kos has said over and over again that all he cares about is beating the republican, he dosn't care about, even, telling the truth or distorting things.

They'll also ban you for disagreeing with the groupthink, just like LGF or Free Republic...
posted by delmoi at 8:42 AM on October 3, 2005


I always thought Democratic Underground was the analog for NR and RedState. Where does AmericaBlog rank? Atrios? Talking Points Memo? MyDD? Think Progress?

I don't know about that. To me it seems like he's just nominating one of his good friends for a good job. She probably stopped giving money to the democrats because she got hired by the republicans.

Anyway, I guess we'll see.
posted by delmoi at 8:44 AM on October 3, 2005


I'm agreeing a lot with dios.

[But as for this -- I would hope that Bush wouldn't use such an important thing in such a political way -- Bush is already on record as calling for an amendment to the Constitution banning gay marriage, which demonstrated his willingness to exploit the Constitution -- another "important thing" -- frivolously for short-term political gain. Let's not get into that right here. But still.]
posted by digaman at 8:45 AM on October 3, 2005


Kos has said over and over again that all he cares about is beating the republican, he dosn't care about, even, telling the truth

Cites welcome.
posted by digaman at 8:46 AM on October 3, 2005


It may be "silly to try and try view the nominations as an outcomes-based exercise"... under ideal circumstances. I think the political mood is such right now that those doing the confirmation are worried that those doing the nomination are nomination from an agenda, rather then from a sense of wanting the best people on the bench.

There is no apparent trust amount the two parties right now, so it is no wonder Dems want to know how a nomination will vote, because they assume the president makes the nomination based on how he thinks the person will vote.
posted by edgeways at 8:46 AM on October 3, 2005


Kos has said over and over again that all he cares about is beating the republican, he dosn't care about, even, telling the truth or distorting things.
posted by delmoi at 11:42 AM EST on October 3 [!]


Any evidence of this, Mr. Nuclear Waste?
posted by Rothko at 8:50 AM on October 3, 2005


I'm a bit of a latecomer in this thread, so bear with me.

Pollomacho: "I mean no disrespect or insult here, but I just plain never thought I would say this in this thread.
I agree completely with dios.
"

I'm surprised you were careless enough to phrase this in that way. Sure, dios is guilty of occasionally offensive behavior, but he's equally capable of well thought-out and intelligent commentary, as this thread is clear indication of. It is this pre-conceived notion of guilt that has gotten us into many a MeTa flamewar over dios. I'm no fan of many things he's done, but this illustrates that MeFi at large still has yet to get off its horse.
/derail

dios: "Although, I would hope that Bush wouldn't use such an important thing in such a political way."
You're kidding, right? Sure, I would hope so too, but I know better. BushCo has shown at every turn a level of pure partisanship that is unprecedented among the prior 42 admins. I basically agree with everything I've seen you say in this thread, but Bush is nothing more than a broken speak-and-spell, political version, only not nearly as bright.

It's pretty clear that this nominee has in no way distinguished herself as an intellectual, or even a critical analyzer. She's a crony, we know it, and the sad part is she'll probably still get in. I have no problem with an opinionated justice, IF they have the open-mindedness to evaluate each case independently of their opinions and hold their opinions as shakable when presented with new information. It's for that reason that Souter is such an excellent justice. She, however, shows no signs of this capability.
posted by mystyk at 8:52 AM on October 3, 2005


It's the religious right who are demanding a person with a demonstrably anti-abortion, anti-gay, "pro-family" record.

I don't know the answer to this question, but how many republican senators are willing to vote against the President without knowing that there's something ideologically objectionable about her?

My guess is that you will be wrong as many times you are right on the Supreme Court in discerning where judges are going to differ. They hear a lot more cases than just cultural lightning rods, and simplistic conservative/liberal analysis is frequently wrong.

Yeah, my left-center-right isn't a good description, but I didn't want to get into n axes of ideology. Still, I think that those axes exist and that seasoned SCOTUS watchers (not me) can probably do a good job of predicting how a given justice will vote in maybe eighty percent of the cases. There were certainly some recent notable surprises, but I think they're in the minority. You don't hear so much about the ones that are decided as expected that don't have large cultural impact.
posted by anapestic at 8:54 AM on October 3, 2005


Miers' long-winded legalistic justification of Bush's conflation of Iraq and 9/11 that I posted above is the future: a page-worth of citations churned out for the purpose of justifying a lie told over and over by "the most brilliant man" she's ever met.
posted by digaman at 8:57 AM on October 3, 2005


I'm surprised you were careless enough to phrase this in that way. Sure, dios is guilty of occasionally offensive behavior, but he's equally capable of well thought-out and intelligent commentary, as this thread is clear indication of. It is this pre-conceived notion of guilt that has gotten us into many a MeTa flamewar over dios. I'm no fan of many things he's done, but this illustrates that MeFi at large still has yet to get off its horse.

Whatever, dude. One can be surprised to find himself agreeing with someone because he very often disagrees with that person. That doesn't imply that the other person is incapable of thought-out and intelligent commentary. You just pulled that out of nowhere.
posted by ludwig_van at 8:58 AM on October 3, 2005


For the most part I agree with dios on this. Including the comment about the politicizing of the court over the last 2 decades, which is very sad.

However, I don't think Bush will remove her nomination no matter what, because if we have learned one thing over the last 5 years it is that Bush never ever admits wrong doing. With control over the Senate there is no reason for him to play games with a court nominee. If he nominated this person, then he (read: his Administration, VP, Rove, his daddy, et al) fully expects her to be confirmed.
posted by terrapin at 8:59 AM on October 3, 2005


Actually, dios is capable. I've talked to him on the phone. He doesn't always show his best face here -- a polite understatement -- but he's been right on in this topic, and deserves to be treated decently here and now for that.
posted by digaman at 9:00 AM on October 3, 2005


If the President really is "the most brilliant man" she's ever met, then I have two possible reactions:

a. She's not met many men. Or worse,

b. She knows a side of President that none of us have been privileged to meet. And if we're not worthy of seeing that side, then what does that say about how "the most brilliant man" feels about the rest of us?
posted by grabbingsand at 9:06 AM on October 3, 2005


duck: Did you mean to link to the article you linked to, or did you mean to link to this one?
posted by Johnny Assay at 9:06 AM on October 3, 2005


as white house council, i bet she claims that all documents she has created have client/lawyer privilege

The relationship between the President and the White House Counsel doesn't have attorney-client privileges (thank you, Kenneth Starr) because the White House Counsel's "client" is the United States.
posted by kirkaracha at 9:09 AM on October 3, 2005


Mystyk, did you actually read the words that you quoted for me? I said that I did not wish to seem like I was disrespecting dios by acknowledging that we rarely agree. Dios is always entitled to his opinions, even the ones that occasionally frustrate lefties like me. I don't think it is shocking to anyone that dios's opinion and mine are usually different, least of all to dios and I. I would think that is would be disingenuous to think that from the outset that two people with such divergent political viewpoints would not be able to find common ground in a contentious subject such as a Supreme Court nomination, however I agree with dios in this one, right down to his reasoning for his opinions and that was a surprise. It was not a surprise that dios came up with a rational, thoughtful post, he is completely capable of that, even when it is a post I'm not in agreement with.
posted by Pollomacho at 9:09 AM on October 3, 2005


Excuse my ignorance here, but I'm going to ask a possibly silly question. She was Bush's Staff Secretary. Is that the equivalent of Mrs. Landingham on The West Wing?

Mrs. Landingham was the president's personal secretary. Staff Secretary is more of an official "Assistant to the President" job, the way Press Secretaries and various agency advisors are. That said, I think it's a "bottom of the top" job.

I don't think The West Wing ever showed anyone in that role. Brett Kavanaugh is the current Staff Secretary.
posted by mkultra at 9:11 AM on October 3, 2005


I agree that dios is capable, and he's proved himself so numerous times. I've agreed and disagreed with him on various issues, but every time something he said is of an inflammatory nature, a pile-on from the community coupled with a cornered animal response from him ends up on MeTa. A similar thing happens with davy, Rothko, etc.

When he is keeping his tounge in check, he has much to say that's valuable, but people act strangely around him. Of the ones that didn't flame, I'd say most of the community (caveat: the ones that posted in the threads in question) agreed with him most of the time, but act all surprised as if the stars were in some magical alignment. This "I'm surprised I agree with him" thing is something I've seen before and usually indicates a bias. Look back at his posting history and see for yourself. He's intelligent, but beople have trouble looking past the way he's been known to say things from time to time.
posted by mystyk at 9:14 AM on October 3, 2005


On Preview:
Pollomacho, fair enough. I'll give you the benefit of the doubt. Hopefully you can understand where I'm coming from, though.
posted by mystyk at 9:16 AM on October 3, 2005


If you guys must discuss something other than the SCOTUS nomination, please take it elsewhere.

And, yes, I should have emailed this point, but not all of the offenders have a listed email address, and it's surely not worth taking to MetaTalk.
posted by anapestic at 9:18 AM on October 3, 2005


this is just awful! I have been saving a "is that a pubic hair on my torture memo?" joke for months!
posted by Mr T at 9:19 AM on October 3, 2005


He's intelligent, but beople have trouble looking past the way he's been known to say things from time to time.
posted by mystyk at 12:14 PM EST on October 3 [!]


"To be honest, I was not certain of the group's goals. I never bothered to check them out."

"dios, I apologize if I missed your link to your evidence, but my cursory research (i.e., the first hit on Google) came up with this, which is on the University of Dayton Law School website. Note the second sentence: "Indeed, every state uses the grand jury for at least some purpose...". How does that jibe with your statement (made twice) that most states have gotten rid of grand juries?"
posted by Rothko at 9:23 AM on October 3, 2005


Conservatives seem to be apoplectic about this choice. e.g.,

“Bush’s oppenents are right–he’s as dumb as a post.”

It's petty of me, I know, but I'm feeling a bit of schadenfreund at the moment...
posted by jasper411 at 9:23 AM on October 3, 2005


"She has also earned a reputation as exacting, detail-oriented, and meticulous -- to a fault, her critics say. 'She can't separate the forest from the trees,' says one former White House staffer...
..."One former White House official familiar with both the counsel's office and Miers is more blunt. 'She failed in Card's office for two reasons,' the official says. 'First, because she can't make a decision, and second, because she can't delegate, she can't let anything go. And having failed for those two reasons, they move her to be the counsel for the president, which requires exactly those two talents.'

from
posted by thekorruptor at 9:24 AM on October 3, 2005


thekorruptor: "'She failed in Card's office for two reasons,' the official says. 'First, because she can't make a decision, and second, because she can't delegate, she can't let anything go. And having failed for those two reasons, they move her to be the counsel for the president, which requires exactly those two talents.'"

I think this is, without a doubt, the best thing I've heard all day. Good thing the day is young, there is still time to improve upon it.
posted by mystyk at 9:34 AM on October 3, 2005


Love this quote from redstate.org:
" we have 55 republican senators.
could have picked a real conservative.
instead, he picks a 60-year-old woman who's never been married and has never had kids. are we really to believe that she'll vote to overturn roe?

are we to believe that this woman hasn't had sex outside of marriage over the past several decades? and if she has, hasn't she been counting on the right to abortion just as other career-oriented women do?

bush has betrayed us. i will never again contribute to the republican party.


And I never thought I'd say this either, but dios, I completely agree with your comment.
posted by SisterHavana at 9:38 AM on October 3, 2005


Kos has said over and over again that all he cares about is beating the republican, he dosn't care about, even, telling the truth or distorting things.
posted by delmoi at 11:42 AM EST on October 3 [!]
Any evidence of this, Mr. Nuclear Waste?


I remember him (kos) saying that a couple times, but I'm not going to bother diging through the whole site. If you don't want to belive me, don't.
posted by delmoi at 9:39 AM on October 3, 2005


More in the conservative blogger hate-fest that's bubbling up...

Southern Appeal

I am done with President Bush: Harriet Miers? Are you freakin' kidding me?!


Right Wing News:

This is undoubtedly the worst decision of Bush's entire presidency so far.

Michelle Malkin:

If this is President Bush's bright idea to buck up his sagging popularity--among conservatives as well as the nation at large--one wonders whom he would have picked in rosier times. Shudder.

William Kristol:

I'm Disappointed, Depressed and Demoralized
posted by jasper411 at 9:41 AM on October 3, 2005


I think this is a horrible nomination, at least on the surface. In addition to insufficient experience, the few times I've seen her speak (not in person) she hasn't come across as someone to handle the hearings process well.

On the subject of lack of judicial experience, though, here's a list of 20th century justices with no prior judicial experience and what they had done with there lives before being nominated. While it is clear that prior judicial experience has never been much of a requirement (and many of the justices not listed only had token one or two year stints on a bench) it is pretty uncommon for a justice to never have been in public service, Louis Brandeis being the most prominent exception.

Interestingly in this time when many senators talk about not being a rubber stamp and the importance the Founding Fathers placed on the Senate's advise and consent responsibilities, many of the confirmations prior to 1970 or so took less than two weeks and several were approved on the same day the nomination was made. Not saying that is right, just that it is interesting.

William H. Moody - city solicitor, district attorney, 4 terms in house of representatives, Secretary of the Navy (was on bench for only four years).
James Clark McReynolds - professor of law at Vanderbilt, assistan U.S. Attorney General, U.S. Attorney General
Louis D. Brandeis - entire career prior to nomination was in private practice; founded Harvard Law Review
Harlan Fiske Stone - private practice, faculty Columbia Law, U.S. Attorney General
George Sutherland - Utah state senate, two terms in U.S. House of Reprentatives, two terms in U.S. Senate, U.S. Consul to the Hague.
Pierce Butler - assistant county attorney, county attorney, private practice, regent University of Minnesota
Charles Evans Hughes - private practice, faculty of Cornell Law, governor of New York, resigned court to run for president and was later appointed chief justice.
Owen J. Roberts - private practice, assistant district attorney, deputy attorney general, special United States attorney (investigating Harding administration), private practice.
Stanley F. Reed - Kentucky General Assembly, private practice, counsel to Federal Farm Board, counsel of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation, Solicitor General
Felix Frankfurter - Assistant U.S. attorney, Bureau of Insular Affairs, faculty of Harvard Law, assistant Secretary of War, chairman of the War Labor Policies Board
William O. Douglas - school teacher, private practice, faculty at Columbia Law and Yale Law, Securities and Exchange Commission chairman
Earl Warren - deputy district attorney, district attorney, governor of California
James F. Byrnes - district attorney, 14 terms in U.S. House of Representatives, two terms in U.S. Senate
Rober H. Jackson - private practice, assistant general counsel in the IRS, assistant U.S. attorney general, Solicitor General, U.S. Attorney General
Harold H. Burton - corporate lawyer, private practice, one term in Ohio House of Representatives, mayor of Cleveland, U.S. Senate
Tom C. Clark - private practice, district attorney (Dallas), various positions in the Department of Justice up to Attorney General (resigned court when son was named Attorney General).
Byron R. White - private practice, deputy U.S. Attorney General
Arthur J. Goldberg - division head in OSS, counsel to CIO and United Steelworkers, Secretary of Labor (resigned court to become ambassador to U.N.)
Abe Fortas - staff jobs in SEC and PWA, undersecretary of Interior, private practice
Lewis F. Powell, Jr. - private practice, president of the American Bar Association, member of LBJ's crime commission.
William H. Rehnquist - private practice, assistant attorney general
posted by obfusciatrist at 9:42 AM on October 3, 2005


I'm not going to bother [citing DailyKos]... If you don't want to belive me, don't.
posted by delmoi at 12:39 PM EST on October 3


Thank you, I won't.
posted by Rothko at 9:42 AM on October 3, 2005


Alexander Hamilton wrote in Federalist #76:
To what purpose then require the co-operation of the Senate? I answer, that the necessity of their concurrence would have a powerful, though, in general, a silent operation. It would be an excellent check upon a spirit of favoritism in the President, and would tend greatly to prevent the appointment of unfit characters from State prejudice, from family connection, from personal attachment, or from a view to popularity. In addition to this, it would be an efficacious source of stability in the administration.

It will readily be comprehended, that a man who had himself the sole disposition of offices, would be governed much more by his private inclinations and interests, than when he was bound to submit the propriety of his choice to the discussion and determination of a different and independent body, and that body an entier branch of the legislature. The possibility of rejection would be a strong motive to care in proposing. The danger to his own reputation, and, in the case of an elective magistrate, to his political existence, from betraying a spirit of favoritism, or an unbecoming pursuit of popularity, to the observation of a body whose opinion would have great weight in forming that of the public, could not fail to operate as a barrier to the one and to the other. He would be both ashamed and afraid to bring forward, for the most distinguished or lucrative stations, candidates who had no other merit than that of coming from the same State to which he particularly belonged, or of being in some way or other personally allied to him, or of possessing the necessary insignificance and pliancy to render them the obsequious instruments of his pleasure.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 9:46 AM on October 3, 2005


I'll cite Kos, again: Miers' confirmation will be public, and televised.  It provides Democrats with a rare opportunity to break through the 'liberal media' and speak directly to the American people who will be watching the hearings at home.
Miers is a Bush confidant. She will refuse to answer. She will stonewall. She'll spin.  
But the Democrats have a golden opportunity here to bring some of the biggest scandals of this administration back into the public consciousness. A question about Bush being AWOL, or about US approval of torture, or about the CIA leak need not be answered for it be effective.
These hearings are not about only Miers.  These hearings rovide an invaluable forum for Democrats to communicate directly with the American people, to use one of Bush's own players against him.  It is a strategy Bush will not expect.  If coordinated correctly, it can deal this administration a devastating blow.

posted by amberglow at 9:53 AM on October 3, 2005


However, I don't think Bush will remove her nomination no matter what, because if we have learned one thing over the last 5 years it is that Bush never ever admits wrong doing. With control over the Senate there is no reason for him to play games with a court nominee.

Look at Keirk(sp?) He withdrew the nomination, but that was mostly due to scandals, rather then incompetence. But it's not unprecedented. I think, personally, that he is probably aware of the fact that the country has turned on him, and will act like the coward he is and withdraw the nominee if the republicans in congress really want him too.
posted by delmoi at 9:54 AM on October 3, 2005


Rothko: I should hope you know that I have no dog in your fights. So please take this advice deeply to heart: STFU already about dios. "We" just don't give a fuck about what you think about him. We know you don't like him, don't respect him, don't want him around. Fucking enough with it already. Sheesh.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:00 AM on October 3, 2005


The word is many Repubs want this wrapped up by Thanksgiving

I think this will go along party lines
posted by edgeways at 10:00 AM on October 3, 2005


Question for all: How does Rove benefit by this appointment? How does Bush benefit?

These guys don't act in a manner that is best for America. They always act in a manner that is calculated to be best for themselves.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:01 AM on October 3, 2005


Miers is a former board member of Exodus Ministries. This is not the ex-gay ministry Exodus International, but “a non-denominational Christian organization established to assist ex-offenders and their families become productive members of society by meeting both their spiritual and physical needs.” link
posted by ism at 10:08 AM on October 3, 2005


Man, given how apoplectic the right-wingers seem to be about this woman, it almost makes me want to support her :P

I can't believe Kos thinks asking about bush being AWOL in Vietnam is a good idea for the confirmation hearings. IMO there needs to be a single line of attack "cronyism" Show how Miers is a Crony, and expand on that (outside of the hearings) to illustrate how cronyism is endemic in the administration. The Democratic Party will never do what Kos wants, because Kos is crazy. We're talking about a guy who thought Grey Davis would beat the recall election.
posted by delmoi at 10:12 AM on October 3, 2005


The right wingers are going to be apoplectic about anyone who doesn't come out and say that life begins at conception. The left wingers are going to be apoplectic about anyone Bush nominates. You can't draw reasonable conclusions about a nominee based on the reactions of unreasonable people.
posted by anapestic at 10:20 AM on October 3, 2005


Rothko: I should hope you know that I have no dog in your fights. So please take this advice deeply to heart: STFU already about dios. "We" just don't give a fuck about what you think about him. We know you don't like him, don't respect him, don't want him around. Fucking enough with it already. Sheesh.
posted by five fresh fish at 1:00 PM EST on October 3 [!]


When "you" throw around descriptions like "intelligent", "we" have as much a right to quote his so-called "intelligent" comments as "you" do to question "our" right to do so. Fucking enough with the "fucking enough," already. Thank you.
posted by Rothko at 10:20 AM on October 3, 2005


Rothko-Do you have any substantive contributions left, or is it all just trolling with you now?
posted by OmieWise at 10:26 AM on October 3, 2005


These guys don't act in a manner that is best for America. They always act in a manner that is calculated to be best for themselves.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:01 PM CST on October 3

five fresh fish,

You seem to suggest that these guys are consciously acting against the interests of America, and I doubt that is true.

If a person believes that they are what is best for America, then there ceases to be a internal conflict between self-interest and whats good for the country. Bush and Rove think that way, in my opinion (as do 99.9% of the partisans in this country). If the country is better off with *me and my guys* in power, then I am doing what is in the best interest for the country when I do things in *our* best interest.

The problem is combating this belief across the spectrum. When you are not only hostile to the The Other but also to the Middle (as both extremes are guilty of), then you push this country father to the poles and it engenders a belief that The Other is so evil that the country needs *my guys* for the good of the country. Bush is guilty of this polarization, but so are many of the people on the Left. Clinton and the DLC tried to combat that with The Third Way. Would that it would have worked. But Clinton had too many personal flaws, and the movement has lost esteem. Now look at how the DLC types are treated by both extremes.

But until the polarization and demonization of The Other ends, we will have a hard time moving forward in the national dialogue and you will continue to see people who believe that the country's best interest is axiomatically linked to their partisan success.

But as to your other question of how this benefits Bush politcally, I really don't know. I would love to know their political calculus. The only political angle I can see is that she is a woman in O'Connor's mold. So if she is attacked on political or jurisprudential grounds (as opposed to qualifications grounds), one can argue that the opposition is unreasonable and thereby justifying an all out war.
posted by dios at 10:26 AM on October 3, 2005


*rolls eyes* take it off thread already folks
posted by edgeways at 10:28 AM on October 3, 2005


Rothko-Do you have any substantive contributions left, or is it all just trolling with you now?
posted by OmieWise at 1:26 PM EST on October 3


Did I personally attack someone? I disagreed with someone's assertion and provided counterexamples. It's not trolling if you disagree with someone and politely question the truth of what they say. Feel free to take it to Metatalk if quotations bother you.
posted by Rothko at 10:30 AM on October 3, 2005


When "you" throw around descriptions like "intelligent", "we" have as much a right to quote his so-called "intelligent" comments as "you" do to question "our" right to do so. Fucking enough with the "fucking enough," already. Thank you.

I don't see how dios's comments about grand juries in another thread have anything to do with this thread. Nor do they especially reflect one way or another on his intelligence.

You certainly have a right to say whatever you like, whenever you like. However, having a right to do something doesn't mean you should.

Oh, and I think you have a problem with the quote key on your keyboard. Fortunately, new keyboards are cheap!
posted by me & my monkey at 10:31 AM on October 3, 2005


I don't see how dios's comments about grand juries in another thread have anything to do with this thread. Nor do they especially reflect one way or another on his intelligence.

They reflect on apparent holes in Dios' knowledge, specifically as they related to legal issues, upon which an estimation should be made about the relevance of his so-called "intelligent" comments in this thread. Would you call an auto mechanic to the stands to comment on fingerprint evidence?
posted by Rothko at 10:36 AM on October 3, 2005


Atrios sums it up perfectly:
Wingnuttia is rather angry at the choice. I don't think this is because they're really concerned that she's not conservative enough for their tastes, although that's part of it. They're angry because this was supposed to be their nomination. This is was their moment. They didn't just want a stealth victory, they wanted parades and fireworks. They wanted Bush to find the wingnuttiest wingnut on the planet, fully clothed and accessorized in all the latest wingnut fashions, not just to give them their desired Court rulings, but also to publicly validate their influence and power. They didn't just want substantive results, what they wanted even more were symbolic ones. They wanted Bush to extend a giant middle finger to everyone to the left of John Ashcroft. They wanted to watch Democrats howl and scream and then ultimately lose a nasty confirmation battle. They wanted this to be their "WE RUN THE COUNTRY AND THERE'S NOTHING YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT" moment.

Whatever kind of judge she would be, she doesn't provide them with that.
I think to a large degree it really is as simple as that. 99% of the political weblogs stopped caring about policy and only wanted "to win" over a year ago. The reaction from the right-wing, especially the Malkins, LGFs, etc., is the reaction of a bunch of people who just saw Bush announce to the entire country that, despite their suggestions otherwise, he just doesn't listen to them.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 10:40 AM on October 3, 2005


"Call me crazy", but Alex may be "on to something" with his "unusual" although "admittedly irritating" style of posting "inflammatory comments" in the form of "Zagat reviews".
posted by Armitage Shanks at 10:41 AM on October 3, 2005


I know this is falling on deaf ears, but from the ABA website's FAQ about grand juries:
Does every jurisdiction use a grand jury?

The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution requires a grand jury indictment for federal criminal charges. Only about half the states now use grand juries.
I don't know what more you need, Alex. I suspect nothing will satisfy you. You could easily have figured this out for yourself, but you care less about the truth than you do about tarring dios. Common sense should have told you that this was the wrong issue to pick a fight with him over.
posted by anapestic at 10:44 AM on October 3, 2005


XQUZYPHYR writes "I think to a large degree it really is as simple as that."

I agree, that quote sums it up very well, although I don't think that it's only been a year since political blogs cared about policy more than winning. I'm not sure most of them ever did.
posted by OmieWise at 10:46 AM on October 3, 2005


So this Miers pick is weak not because neither liberals or conservatives know how she will vote (indeed, that might be the one virtue of this pick), but it is weak because Miers isn't highly qualified.
posted by dios at 7:38 AM PST on October 3


Props.

The Kerik withdrawal does provide some hope. But judging by the amazing stunts pulled off by Bush & Co. so far, I fear they may somehow shove Miers through. Atta boy.
posted by slf at 10:49 AM on October 3, 2005


Anapestic, let him defend his own comments. Forrest's observation is bourne out by the links he provided. This doesn't jibe with the ABA, either, nor does ABA's numbers jibe with Dios' assertion that "grand juries are abolished" nearly everywhere. Someone or some group in this equation is wrong. /shrug
posted by Rothko at 10:55 AM on October 3, 2005


Speaking of Kos, looks like democrats in general seem to be pro Miers. She may end up sailing through the confirmation process, and putting the nail in the coffin of the republican majority, or something.

I still don't know much about this woman, so we'll see what happens.
posted by delmoi at 11:03 AM on October 3, 2005


How does Antonin Scalia feel about this? Seriously, he must be pissed to be looked over for Chief Justice, and now this.

Thanks obfusciatrist for the info.
posted by bardic at 11:24 AM on October 3, 2005


"It'd make the GOP Senate look strong and independent of Bush."

*staggers with the wonderful vision of this*

Wow, that’d be great. But I think they rolled over when they let Bushco stomp dirty all over McCain.

I agree with dios (et. al.) on Meirs qulifications.

I do take issue with much of the press on this though. They’re promoting it like there is some huge fight, adding needless complexities, etc.

/I think the Supremes will be first against the wall when the revolution comes.

Insofar as Bush appointing a crony - well duh.

"...despite their suggestions otherwise, he just doesn't listen to them."


Control the courts and the currency and let the rabble argue about the rest. It’s Rove 101. To rephrase Rove’s quote about Machivelli 101.
(I feel like Patton shouting to Rommel: “I read your book you son of a bitch!”)


My question is - to what end? I mean ok he’s got a few people on the court, etc. No one ever grabs power with the idea of letting it go. So what? Next election cycle? 4 - 8 years from now? 'Cause he's not going to get re-elected. And the system is laboring under a great deal of suspension of disbelief as it is.

Up until the Bush years the conservative agenda (I’m thinking old guard here, Buckley, et al) pushed for a continum of principles. Shouting “stop!” or at least “slow down!”
Now I’m lost. I don’t see what is to be gained along those lines since the trend now seems to be ever greater changes.
There doesn’t seem to be a consistent set of guiding principles beyond securing more power - or “winning” as XQUZYPHYR mentioned.
posted by Smedleyman at 11:35 AM on October 3, 2005


Johnny Assay: Oops...yes, the article you pointed out was the one I had in mind.
posted by duck at 11:55 AM on October 3, 2005


They reflect on apparent holes in Dios' knowledge, specifically as they related to legal issues, upon which an estimation should be made about the relevance of his so-called "intelligent" comments in this thread. Would you call an auto mechanic to the stands to comment on fingerprint evidence?

If you ever find someone without holes in their knowledge, be sure to let us all know. And that is one sad excuse for an analogy you've got there.

So, no, I don't find dios' comment about grand juries to be especially damning, whether it's entirely correct or not. They were relatively peripheral to his argument in that thread, his main point being that grand juries don't create a high bar for indictments. They're completely irrelevant here.

In this thread, dios' legal qualifications aren't even at issue. If you read his original comment within this thread, it doesn't hinge on them at all, other than that he probably wouldn't have heard Miers speak at the Dallas Bar if he weren't a lawyer. Any reasonable observer could have made the same comment.

In any case, are you sure that you, of all people, should be going through someone else's back catalog of comments, checking for errors?
posted by me & my monkey at 11:58 AM on October 3, 2005


Another boot-licking toady promoted to a job she's ill qualified for. This country is doomed.
posted by Jatayu das at 12:09 PM on October 3, 2005


There doesn’t seem to be a consistent set of guiding principles beyond securing more power

What sort of political parties do we see in history that operate in this manner, without regard to any ideals beyond the central role of authority and hierarchy?

Bueller?
posted by sonofsamiam at 12:11 PM on October 3, 2005



If a person believes that they are what is best for America, then there ceases to be a internal conflict between self-interest and whats good for the country. Bush and Rove think that way, in my opinion (as do 99.9% of the partisans in this country). If the country is better off with *me and my guys* in power, then I am doing what is in the best interest for the country when I do things in *our* best interest.


Very, very, very well put dios. I think this is one of the most difficult things to communicate to really hardcore partisans. I know both conservative Christians and secularist liberals who are convinced, deep in their hearts, that The Other Guys are literally working hard to destroy the country for personal gain. It's the kind of divide that can't be fixed with he said/she said reporting or even fact-checking.

It's about hate, I think, and it's a real narcotic.
posted by verb at 12:12 PM on October 3, 2005


It's about hate, I think, and it's a real narcotic.

A drug peddled by politicians that then go to parties and events in DC with their "friends in the opposition." You need a base of "users" (contributers) to stay in office.
posted by probablysteve at 12:19 PM on October 3, 2005


Wow, after I left this turned into a pretty good thread. Good on ya, Dios.
posted by klangklangston at 12:45 PM on October 3, 2005


The media has been pretty amusing today. This may have been not a terrible nomination, politics wise, as the snap censuses seems to be "Well we don't hate her". Many conservatives seem to be disappointed, but will in the end go along with the nomination.

Qualifications wise... well, that is another story, but when has qualifications been a serious issues in government? The one substantive answer Roberts gave was inaccurate and he was not called on it, so if the lady takes the same tact she'll be a sho-in
posted by edgeways at 12:51 PM on October 3, 2005


These guys don't act in a manner that is best for America. They always act in a manner that is calculated to be best for themselves.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:01 PM CST on October 3

five fresh fish,

You seem to suggest that these guys are consciously acting against the interests of America, and I doubt that is true.


The text you quoted doesn't suggest that.

If a person believes that they are what is best for America, then there ceases to be a internal conflict between self-interest and whats good for the country.

This is an irrational perspective and I don't see how you can make this generalization. It's perfectly possible, indeed desirable, for a leader to think that he is the best suited for his position and yet to be able to distinguish his own personal best interests from the best interests of the nation he's governing. Unless of course he's governing a very small community where the leaders and most or all of the citizens live in the same conditions and face the same problems, which is decidedly not the case for the US.
posted by ludwig_van at 1:07 PM on October 3, 2005


She's even more of a pig in a poke than Roberts was. Selecting a person whose most noteworthy characteristic is 10 years of working with Bush is unwise given the current focus on cronyism, like the recent Time article that found "that at top positions in some vital government agencies, the Bush Administration is putting connections before experience." (Cronyism isn't news in and of itself, but it's significant that the Bush administration's cronyism is being openly discussed, and discussed as a bad thing.) Also, her extensive experience in the Executive Branch is a separation of powers concern.
posted by kirkaracha at 1:16 PM on October 3, 2005


It's a shame she doesn't get to dress up her kids as little Kennedy-tykes.
posted by bardic at 1:18 PM on October 3, 2005


For the first time in Metafilter, I find myself completely in agreement with dios: even a fire-and-brimstone fundamentalist would be a better choice if he had a decent legal resumé and a record for basing his decisions on the law of the country, rather than the "Law of the Book". Choosing a political hack, somebody who has actually been deeply involved in Bush's electioneering, for the Supreme Court fundamentally undermines the constitutional system of checks-and-balances and the balance of executive, legislative and judiciary.
From my experience in other countries, I can tell you this: when political pawns take charge of the judiciary, a country always ends up going to the dogs.
posted by Skeptic at 1:33 PM on October 3, 2005


It's perfectly possible, indeed desirable, for a leader to think that he is the best suited for his position and yet to be able to distinguish his own personal best interests from the best interests of the nation he's governing.

I don't think dios meant shouldn't I think the point was that they don't. They don't see that everything that is good for them is not necessarily good for the country.
posted by Carbolic at 1:33 PM on October 3, 2005


they shouldn't
posted by Carbolic at 1:34 PM on October 3, 2005


Given Miers' past positions in the Dallas Bar and the Texas Bar, I'm kind of surprised she's considered such a dark horse. You can get some idea of the priorities and thought processes of the leadership of the Kentucky Bar and probably the Louisville Bar here - they write columns, and go around shaking hands and speaking at CLE sessions. She has to have a trail somewhere.

As to her qualifications: "There are a lot of mediocre judges and people and lawyers, and they are entitled to a little representation, aren't they?" - Senator Roman Hruska, on Richard Nixon's nomination of G. Harold Carswell to the Supreme Court.
posted by dilettante at 1:52 PM on October 3, 2005


even a fire-and-brimstone fundamentalist would be a better choice if he had a decent legal resume

Disagree completely. Any kind of fundamentalist, especially another bullshit "strict constructionist" or whatever those posers call themselves would be much, much worse.
posted by mrgrimm at 1:58 PM on October 3, 2005


Here is a funny possibility. What if the Dems start truly enthusing about her? Would that make the Repubs and more significantly the ultra conservatives that much more rabid about not having her. Which would mean either 1) she fails due to REPUBLICAN opposition, making Bush look out of step with the party and further weakening his stature... 2) she passes and we have a (possibly) mediocre judge that might have little influence on the court and the ultras remain pissed off.


(real life trolling?)
posted by edgeways at 2:17 PM on October 3, 2005


It's funny, in a tragic sort of way. I am somewhat old and extremely foreigner, but I remember quite well that before Bush's first election, all Americans I knew and most if not all Americans in public forums would speak of the Supreme Court in awe. No matter the Presidency each judge ascended, they were considered entities above all partisan influence and the Court as whole the closest one can hope to get of a perfect institution in a modern democracy.

Then came the Florida coup d'etat and people on both sides of the fence started talking about the Supreme Court as something to be controlled, politically manipulated by the careful selection of "activist" judges capable of shaping the society well after the appointing faction was voted off power. That's a pretty sad state of affairs, if you ask me.
posted by nkyad at 2:21 PM on October 3, 2005


I'm wondering if this is a ploy to make the real judicial candidate seem reasonable?

I'm not going to discount this possibility. Apparently, Harry Reid actually suggested her to Bush. One could imagine that Rove, realizing that Bush is a political liability for Republicans in the midterms, wanted to give them an opportunity to show their independence of him. If an "unholy alliance" of Senators is able to mount a filibuster, especially after Harry Reid gives his approval, the Dems will lose all credibility to resist whoever Bush replaces her with.
posted by gsteff at 2:45 PM on October 3, 2005


I mean, especially after Harry Reid already gave his approval of the candidate, not the filibuster.
posted by gsteff at 2:50 PM on October 3, 2005


“What sort of political parties do we see in history that operate in this manner,”

sonofsamiam - I was addressing political philosophy - “conservative” “liberal” not political party.
I agree that political parties do switch out their core philosophies, but I don’t believe any of them have so manifestly abandonded any set of principles. Or rather, none that were successful.

First thing that comes to mind is the Abolitionist movement. You had the whigs, the liberty party, etc, which were subject to the ideas of the movement. The party was not an end in itself, but a conveyance for ideas. In the same way, you had temperance, and other ideas surrounding a core ethos (for good or for ill).

I’m really not seeing that anymore. I’m seeing the lip service for it. That’s about it.

...I suppose I’m nudging dios’ point about doing what’s right for “me and my guys” as doing what’s right for the country in a small degree.

I believe there is that, but I believe they see the means to the ends in different terms.
“We had to destroy the village in order to save it” sort of terms.

But perhaps it looks that way because of the huge amount of apathy that we appear to be swimming in.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:59 PM on October 3, 2005


What sort of political parties do we see in history that operate in this manner, without regard to any ideals beyond the central role of authority and hierarchy?

*raises hand, is about to speak, but is carted off never to be heard from again*

nkyad, they were always political, and FDR packed the court too, but they were never so blatant about it. There was history to consider--this administration is rewriting history daily and i'd bet money we don't have an 08 election at all.
posted by amberglow at 3:20 PM on October 3, 2005


I'll take that bet. (You in the market for a little tinfoil?)
posted by Carbolic at 3:23 PM on October 3, 2005


I'd bet money we don't have an 08 election at all.

I don't even know what to say. This is exactly what dios was talking about above: a complete inability to understand the motivations of the opposition. It's unfathomable to me that some on the left really believe that Bush wants to install himself as some sort of perpetual emperor, suspend elections, institute martial law, &c. Are you really that out of touch?
posted by monju_bosatsu at 3:35 PM on October 3, 2005


The past month or so bush is starting to look pretty tired, I'd be surprised if he wants the job much longer.

We'll have elections in '08. Hopefully the other justices can hold out that long
posted by edgeways at 3:49 PM on October 3, 2005


Amber: Put me down for $2008.
posted by klangklangston at 3:56 PM on October 3, 2005


FDR was pretty fuckin' blatant about trying to pack the court.
posted by Yelling At Nothing at 4:03 PM on October 3, 2005


monju_basatsu: "[it's bad too have] a complete inability to understand the motivations of the opposition. It's unfathomable to me that some on the left..."

I basically agree with you that amberglow is being a dip, but found your juxtaposition humorous. Can you not understand why some moderates might be worried how the right's partisan fanatics enjoy an unequal, uncommon, and dangerous level of government power?
posted by fleacircus at 4:16 PM on October 3, 2005


Is there even such a thing as a "brilliant legal mind", isn't the law at this level just about rationalizing pre-existing positions using the most high-falutin legal jargon? Put someone with a huge amount of common sense on the bench I say. Choose brilliant legal scholars and you end up with Clarence Thomas.
posted by snoktruix at 4:21 PM on October 3, 2005


I've seen a few things on pro-Dem blogs indicating that Miers' "qualifications" are her radical pro-business views, which is something that could also be said of John Roberts. It shouldn't be surprising in an administration in love with the no-bid contract, free trade and deregulation that we see the Supreme Court packed in a way that clearly benefits the big corporations.

Abortion and all that are side shows. The real heart of government is with the corporations - which leads me to think that Miers, like Roberts, will have easy sailing on this one.
posted by graymouser at 4:28 PM on October 3, 2005


And so we continue with the Texan-ization of America. Barf.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:32 PM on October 3, 2005


I'm just waiting to see how the Dems will screw the pooch on this one. Very entertaining. And maddening.
posted by quadog at 4:35 PM on October 3, 2005


It shouldn't be surprising in an administration in love with the no-bid contract, free trade and deregulation that we see the Supreme Court packed in a way that clearly benefits the big corporations.

Well hell, maybe Matt can start MEFICORP, Inc. and we can all invest and then our asses will be covered.
posted by snsranch at 4:45 PM on October 3, 2005


i'd bet money we don't have an 08 election at all.
posted by amberglow at 3:20 PM PST on October 3


Oh, we'll have an election. It just won't be a real one.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 4:50 PM on October 3, 2005


Abortion and all that are side shows.

BINGO!!!!
posted by sonofsamiam at 4:52 PM on October 3, 2005


This has been incredibly amusing to watch. With Roberts, he was pissing off the base. With Miers, he's pissing on the base.
posted by eriko at 5:25 PM on October 3, 2005


You're right on, graymouser.
posted by mrgrimm at 5:59 PM on October 3, 2005


Harriet and the Homos
posted by amberglow at 7:43 PM on October 3, 2005


I wonder if she's a Federalist Society person too?
posted by amberglow at 7:44 PM on October 3, 2005


well, well, well: Harriet Miers, at the time staff secretary, is seen on Aug. 6, 2001, briefing President Bush at his ranch in Crawford, Texas.

Gee, August 6, 2001. I wonder what could be on the cover sheet of that memo Bush is pretending to read. Maybe it was, oh, I don't know...

BIN LADEN DETERMINED TO STRIKE IN US

posted by amberglow at 7:55 PM on October 3, 2005


Harriet Miers's Blog!!! ---... JUST GOT A CALL FROM BORK!
He just wanted to say congrats, and not to let the nabobs get to me! (He actually said "nabobs!!")

Even though I'm a Supreme Court nominee now, sometimes I'm still such a schoolgirl--I get so excited whenever anyone Majorly Important actually notices me...

But I mean, Bork!

(DOING A LITTLE DANCE)

UPDATE: Cheney saw me dancing, I could just die I'm so embarrassed...

posted by amberglow at 7:58 PM on October 3, 2005


Harriet Miers's Blog!!! ---... JUST GOT A CALL FROM BORK!

Ultimately, that site is mainly mocking her for being female. Not impressive.
posted by gsteff at 8:09 PM on October 3, 2005


It's unfathomable to me that some on the left really believe that Bush wants to install himself as some sort of perpetual emperor, suspend elections, institute martial law, &c. Are you really that out of touch?
posted by monju_bosatsu at 6:35 PM EST on October 3 [!]


Well, he did sorta get his daddy's friends in the SCOTUS to help him out in 2000, when the numbers weren't there. Just sayin'.
posted by Rothko at 8:23 PM on October 3, 2005


I'm gonna nominate my horse to the senate!
posted by bigbigdog at 8:36 PM on October 3, 2005


From the blog:
Okay, just one more post. Someone suggested that my theme song should be:
If you got confirmation problems, I feel bad for you, son
I got 99 problems, but Harry Reid ain't one.
Does anyone get this? What does it mean? Do I get a theme song?


Impresive, no. Helarious? Ohh...
posted by delmoi at 8:43 PM on October 3, 2005


Graymouser= On the Motherfuckin' Money.
posted by klangklangston at 8:58 PM on October 3, 2005


before Bush's first election, all Americans I knew and most if not all Americans in public forums would speak of the Supreme Court in awe.

*spits beer onto keyboard*

No matter the Presidency each judge ascended, they were considered entities above all partisan influence and the Court as whole the closest one can hope to get of a perfect institution in a modern democracy.

*spits more beer onto keyboard*

You must know some gullible Americans, friend. I don't know a single adult with even a moderate grasp of U.S. history who ever thought of Supreme Court justices as "entities above all partisan influence."
posted by mediareport at 9:08 PM on October 3, 2005


Seeing Jerri Blank nominated to the Supreme Court is proof that going back to high school is worth the effort.
posted by trondant at 9:32 PM on October 3, 2005


fleacircus wrote: "Can you not understand why some moderates might be worried how the right's partisan fanatics enjoy an unequal, uncommon, and dangerous level of government power?"

Why do you assume that I'm not one of those moderates? I never said that I liked the raw partisan political power wielded by Rove and the other Bush cronies; I just said that seriously suggesting that they might suspend elections is the stuff of tinfoil-wingnut-crankness.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 9:45 PM on October 3, 2005


Abortion and all that are side shows.

BINGO!!!!


Double Bingo. In fact, Rove doesn't want Roe v. Wade overturned. He doesn't want the troops complacent. What good are holy rollers if they are too complacent to roll when summoned?
posted by a_day_late at 10:09 PM on October 3, 2005


lying about WMDs to invade a country that did nothing to us was the stuff of tinfoil-wingnut crankness too, once. and creating the Patriot Act and imprisoning Americans without charging them, and torturing and abusing so many people in so many countries, and having the Supreme Court decide an election, and giving our money to Halliburton and other cronies, and ...
posted by amberglow at 10:11 PM on October 3, 2005


So you're saying I should trade in my tinfoil for a real hat? I think not!
posted by quadog at 10:47 PM on October 3, 2005


he just never stops making an ass of himself.
posted by yousoundhollow at 4:11 AM on October 4, 2005


So... Amber... You're gonna take the bet?
posted by klangklangston at 8:39 AM on October 4, 2005


Shall we get back on topic? Check out her blog!
posted by mds35 at 8:42 AM on October 4, 2005


I don't really get the rightwingers' displeasure with this nomination -- do they really think she's for Roe vs Wade? come on.
posted by matteo at 10:00 AM on October 4, 2005


That blog is priceless. Thank you mds35.
posted by caddis at 10:01 AM on October 4, 2005


sure, klang. We have to clarify it tho--groundrules.
posted by amberglow at 10:49 AM on October 4, 2005


Ms. Miers did a bang-up job delivering the August 6, 2001, PDB, "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S."
posted by kirkaracha at 11:54 AM on October 4, 2005


George Will smacks them both down, smartypants-style: First, it is not important that she be confirmed. Second, it might be very important that she not be. Third, the presumption -- perhaps rebuttable but certainly in need of rebutting -- should be that her nomination is not a defensible exercise of presidential discretion to which senatorial deference is due.
It is not important that she be confirmed because there is no evidence that she is among the leading lights of American jurisprudence, or that she possesses talents commensurate with the Supreme Court's tasks. The president's ``argument' for her amounts to: Trust me. There is no reason to, for several reasons.
He has neither the inclination nor the ability to make sophisticated judgments about competing approaches to construing the Constitution. Few presidents acquire such abilities in the course of their prepresidential careers, and this president, particularly, is not disposed to such reflections. ...

posted by amberglow at 8:40 PM on October 4, 2005


My Little Crony
posted by amberglow at 8:22 PM on October 6, 2005


She's toast: Miers law firm's PAC contributed to Hillary Clinton. Miers contributed to that PAC.
posted by amberglow at 4:03 PM on October 10, 2005


Will laughter be death knell for Miers?
Writings personal, professional inspire mockery of Supreme Court nominee:
"'The tipping point in Washington is when you go from being a subject of caricature to the subject of laughter,' said Bruce Fein, a Miers critic who served in the Reagan administration's Justice Department and who often speaks on constitutional law. 'She's in danger of becoming the subject of laughter.' [The Washington Post | October 15, 2005]
posted by ericb at 12:14 PM on October 15, 2005


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