The Chimp's pick for SCOTUS is Harriet Miers
[UPDATE: I address the mention of Exodus Ministries in the Chimp’s announcement of Miers below.]
[UPDATE 2: David Frum, noted below, stated that Miers referred to Bush as “brilliant.”
She rose to her present position by her absolute devotion to George Bush. I mentioned last week that she told me that the president was the most brilliant man she had ever met. To flatter on such a scale a person must either be an unscrupulous dissembler, which Miers most certainly is not, or a natural follower. And natural followers do not belong on the Supreme Court of the United States.
References to this remark, along with blistering criticism from the conservative columnist have now “vanished” from his current piece. Guess he got a nasty call from the White House as the blogosphere jumped all over this!]
Is it a head fake or the real choice? The woman with no judicial record is in.
President Bush has chosen Harriet Miers, White House counsel and a loyal member of the president’s inner circle, to replace retiring Justice Sandra Day O’Connor on the Supreme Court, a senior administration official said Monday.
If confirmed by the Republican-controlled Senate, Miers, 60, would join Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg as the second woman on the nation’s highest court. Miers, who has never been a judge, was the first woman to serve as president of the Texas State Bar and the Dallas Bar Association.
Without a judicial record, it’s difficult to know whether Miers would dramatically move the court to the right. She would fill the shoes of O’Connor, a swing voter on the court for years who has cast deciding votes on some affirmative action, abortion and death penalty cases.
In Bush’s announcement, he mentioned that Miers had done work with Exodus Ministries. I almost wrecked my car when hearing this, and had to get online when I got to my desk to check it out. The most well-known EM is the notorious “ex-gay” organization.
However, it looks like there is another Exodus Ministries, a faith-based initiative located in East Dallas. It’s a program for ex-drug offenders and their families. EM provides a furnished apartment for 6 months for the ex-offender and his/her family. This outfit is the more likely affiliation. I cannot imagine that Bush would nominate someone tied to an “ex-gay” ministry, given the political heat he is under. He and his aides would have to be morons.
If you do want to hear something scary about Miers, check out this entry by the National Review’s David Frum on 9/29, who’s queasy about the possibility of Miers as a Justice:
I believe I was the first to float the name of Harriet Miers, White House counsel, as a possible Supreme Court. Today her name is all over the news. I have to confess that at the time, I was mostly joking. Harriet Miers is a capable lawyer, a hard worker, and a kind and generous person. She would be an reasonable choice for a generalist attorney, which is indeed how George W. Bush first met her. She would make an excellent trial judge: She is a careful and fair-minded listener. But US Supreme Court?
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. She served Bush well, but she is not the person to lead the court in new directions – or to stand up under the criticism that a conservative justice must expect.
Attytood also has some interesting background on Miers. She knows all the inside dope re: Chimp and his National Guard “service.”
White House counsel Harriet Miers has never served as a judge before, and while this career “hard-nosed lawyer” (as she is invariably described) from Texas certainly deserves some kudos for a trailblazing career as a female lawyer, she’s not a legal scholar, either.
But she does know better than just about anyone else where the bodies are buried (relax, it’s a just a metaphor…we hope) in President Bush’s National Guard scandal. In fact, Bush’s Texas gubenatorial campaign in 1998 (when he was starting to eye the White House) actually paid Miers $19,000 to run an internal pre-emptive probe of the potential scandal. Not long after, a since-settled lawsuit alleged that the Texas Lottery Commission — while chaired by Bush appointee Miers — played a role in a multi-million dollar cover-up of the scandal.
Early Freeper reaction…
Bush knows her well, so I think we have to assume she is on the same wave-length.”
“If this is true- there are going to be a LOT of unhappy people.”
“This is “one” of the “many” last straws.”
“Lack of paper trail…”
“Total BS! Argh!!!”
“I’ve heard she’s not staunchly pro-life, but how do we know this and what do we know about her?”
“Wonder if this is a head fake. If not, she fits the “Roberts” mold as in not being a high profile possibility.”
“Pisses me off. Well, don’t know that I will be voting next year.”
“At 8:15 am the President is going to announce he will officially switch to the Democrat Party.”
“Yep! He might as well.”
“I am not surprised. When we went to vote in 2000 we thought we were getting a Ronald Reagan Conservative. In 2004, we were merely content to keep a Kennedy liberal out of the White House. Now it seems to be confirmed: When we elected and re-elected G.W. Bush, we got a younger version of his father. Conservatism is officially dead in Washington DC.