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Reaction to Miers

Her brilliant dear leader can do no wrong.

It’s all over the map, but it’s safe to say that the Right is clearly not happy, or at least trying to stay neutral. Some of them must be going apesh*t now if they’ve read an item in the WaPo that Harriet donated campaign cash to Democrats, including Al Gore, Sen. Lloyd Bentsen (D-Tex.) and the Democratic National Committee. She did give the Chimp $2,000 for his 2004 reelection effort and $5,000 towards Bush’s recount fund in 2000.

Just think…the wingnuts have been waiting for this moment for years, and they don’t get a clear-cut, AmTaliban candidate they can get behind. I think Sully’s reaction is accurate — Bush’s arrogance is behind the selection. He’s already won his second term, and now he doesn’t have to kowtow to the bible beaters – clearly this is both a nose-thumbing at conservatives, and a signal that Bush is so beaten down by his political fall in the last month or so that he could only pick someone he could personally trust. Miers is his security blanket.

It can’t feel good on the Right when you have Harry Reid blowing kisses at Harriet.

Oops…and Hispanics are pissed at the Chimperor’s pick too.

I can’t wait to hear from Ralph Reed, Little Gary Bauer and Daddy Dobson.


Just when the conservative coalition was already fracturing – over Iraq, spending, immigration, Katrina – you’d think that Bush would pick a solid base-favorite for SCOTUS. That was my assumption: something to rev up the troops, divide the country into a classic culture-war left-right battle, etc. But I was wrong. For Bush, it’s all about his own power and his own decisions and his own cronies. I’m reminded of Clinton in his second term. When Bush says that his government does not practise “torture,” he is doing exactly the same as Clinton did when he said he did not have “sexual relations” with Monica Lewinsky. It all depends on what the meaning of “torture” or “sexual relations” is. Ditto with Miers. The only reason I can think of for Bush to rattle his base in this fashion is the same reason Clinton decided to push his luck with a blow-job in the Oval Office: “Because I could.” He picked Miers because he could. If he wasn’t allowed to get his favorite crony, Gonzales, he was going to go one better. This is not to say we shouldn’t give the Miers nomination a thorough and fair look. Unlike many of the
, I’m not sure yet whether she’d make a decent Justice. But, boy, does this pick remind us of who GWB is: about as arrogant a person as anyone who has ever held his office. Now the base knows how the rest of us have felt for close to five years. He had one accountability moment. He doesn’t expect another.
— Andrew Sullivan

and more, from the Right:

“The president’s nomination of Miers is a betrayal of the conservative, pro-family voters whose support put Bush in the White House in both the 2000 and 2004 elections and who were promised Supreme Court appointments in the mold of Thomas and Scalia. … When there are so many proven judges in the mix, it is unacceptable this president has appointed a political crony with no conservative credentials.”
— Eugene Delgaudio, president of the conservative group Public Advocate.

“I have worked with her for many years and have seen firsthand her legal acumen and know that she will be a credit to the court and this nation. She has risen to the very top of the legal profession, earning the respect of all who know her. Ms. Miers would bring to the Court her brilliance, dedication, and her commitment to the rule of law and equal access to justice for all.”
— Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales.

“The reaction of many conservatives today will be that the president has made possibly the most unqualified choice since Abe Fortas who had been the president’s lawyer. The nomination of a nominee with no judicial record is a significant failure for the advisers that the White House gathered around it. However, the president deserves the benefit of a doubt, the nominee deserves the benefit of hearings, and every nominee deserves an up or down vote.”
— Manuel Miranda, chairman of the conservative Third Branch Conference

“Harriet Miers has had a trailblazing career as one of the top lawyers in the country and is extraordinarily well qualified to serve on the Supreme Court.”
— Ken Mehlman, chairman, Republican National Committee.

“It is very hard to avoid the conclusion that President Bush flinched from a fight on constitutional philosophy. Miers is undoubtedly a decent and competent person. But her selection will unavoidably be judged as reflecting a combination of cronyism and capitulation on the part of the president,”
— William Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard, in “Disappointed, Depressed and Demoralized.”

“With this selection, the president has chosen another outstanding nominee to sit on our nation’s highest court. Ms. Miers is honest and hard working and understands the importance of judicial restraint and the limited role of a judge to interpret the law and not legislate from the bench.”
— Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn.

“We give Harriet Miers the benefit of the doubt because thus far, President Bush has selected nominees to the federal courts who are committed to the written Constitution. Whether we can support her will depend on what we learn from her record and the hearing process.”
— Jan LaRue, chief counsel of the conservative Concerned Women for America.

“The fact that she will bring diversity to the court, in that she’s not a sitting judge, is a good thing. Most of the members on the court today have pretty much the same background. It’s better to have someone with a different path, a different background.”
— Sen. Mike DeWine, R-Ohio, Judiciary Committee member.


On the left…

“The Supreme Court would benefit from the addition of a justice who has real experience as a practicing lawyer. The current justices have all been chosen from the lower federal courts. A nominee with relevant non-judicial experience would bring a different and useful perspective to the court.”
— Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid of Nevada

“She has a reputation for being loyal to this president, whom she has a long history of serving as a close adviser and in working to advance his objectives. In an administration intent on accumulating ex
ecutive power, Ms. Miers’ views on and role in these issues will be important for the Senate to examine.”
— Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee.

“We know even less about Harriet Miers than we did about John Roberts and because this is the critical swing seat on the Court, Americans will need to know a lot more about Miers’ judicial philosophy and legal background before any vote for confirmation.”
— Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.

“We are concerned about the nomination of Harriet Miers and we demand she answer questions regarding her views of fundamental reproductive and privacy rights. We expect Miers to make clear her views on reproductive rights during the hearing process, and the Senate should not confirm a nominee who is not willing to do so.”
— Karen Pearl, interim president of Planned Parenthood.

“With no past judicial experience for the senators to consider, the burden will be on Miers to be forthright with the Senate and the American people. She must outline her judicial philosophy and provide direct answers to questions about how and whether she will uphold fundamental rights, liberties and legal protections on which Americans rely. … There must be no rush to judgment.”
— Ralph G. Neas, president of People for the American Way, a liberal public advocacy group.

“We owe it to the American people to take our time to be sure the nominee will uphold their most basic and fundamental rights. The public demands this from the process, and deserve no less.”
— Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md.

“The burden is on the Bush administration and Harriet Miers to prove to the American people that she will respect and protect our fundamental freedoms, including a woman’s right to choose. Miers does not appear to have a public record to assure America’s pro-choice majority that she is a moderate in the tradition of Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, who was the critical swing vote that protected women’s reproductive health and freedom.”
— Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America.

“While I am pleased the president has named a woman to succeed Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, it remains critically important that the Senate Judiciary Committee, and, indeed, the American people learn more about her positions on some of the most important issues facing our nation.”
— Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., the only woman on the Judiciary Committee.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding