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Bush Bets Court on Untested Aide
Human Events ^

Posted on 10/07/2005 12:02:21 PM PDT by Betaille

They are angry, dismayed and disheartened, but, more importantly, concerned for the fate of the Supreme Court.

The conservative reaction against President Bush’s nomination of untested White House Counsel Harriet Miers to the U.S. Supreme Court was so universal and intense that it erupted at each of the two separate meetings of activist leaders held Wednesday by Americans for Tax Reform President Grover Norquist and Free Congress Foundation Chairman Paul Weyrich.

At the Norquist meeting, conservatives targeted their ire at former Republican National Chairman Ed Gillespie, who is working with the White House on Supreme Court nominations. At the Weyrich meeting, Republican National Chairman Ken Mehlman and Tim Goeglein, White House liaison to the conservative community, found themselves in the crosshairs.

(Excerpt) Read more at humaneventsonline.com ...


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events; Philosophy; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: miers; scotus
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To: dirtboy
Dirtboy, why don't you tell us why you believe she would be an excellent addition to the Supreme Court and was indeed "the Best Person" (not woman, best person) the President could find?

I would help all us skeptics out greatly if you could share with us what you know that we can't seem to find for days of searching. You can consider it your public service duty for this year and I, for one, would be great appreciative.
51 posted on 10/07/2005 12:49:36 PM PDT by msnimje (If you suspect this post might need a sarcasm tag..... it does!)
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To: aumrl
I seem to recall discussions on Roberts on FR. NO one can say with certainty how anyone is going to change over the years.PERIOD

Roberts has a paper trail and is a member of the Federalist Society
52 posted on 10/07/2005 12:50:17 PM PDT by Vision (When Hillary Says She's Going To Put The Military On Our Borders...She Becomes Our Next President)
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To: dirtboy
Sowell wrote a very good piece on the subject, and his analysis tends to be very rational and sober, unlike folks like Norquist and Weyrich, who have their own power bases and interests.

People with no power bases, like Sowell and Williams, must sing for their supper and suck up to the boss for whatever scraps he deigns to throw.

53 posted on 10/07/2005 12:50:21 PM PDT by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: TheDon; CitizenUSA

I doubt the White House secretary/counsel gets invited to the same parties as a member of SCOTUS...

That being said, I don't know how much socializing will effect this woman - being a spinster from TX and all, clearly the enormous pressure to marry and have a family didn't sway her - haven't met too many unmarrieds from the great state of TX! (I did have an unmarried Aunt Oma who lived in Dallas until her 90's - the ultimate threat of my parents when we were teenagers/twenty somethings bringing home the wrong guy, was that if we didn't watch out we would become like Aunt Oma...)

That being said I have no faith in this pick - if GWB had any political capital left, he's squandered it. Some of tried to rationalize this pick as "brilliant" - but I think CitizenUSA's story makes a good point: you don't make a lifetime independent appointment based on current LOYALTY. If she had worked for the same causes as him, or us, or the right at all, perhaps this wouldn't be such a stretch for us now.


54 posted on 10/07/2005 12:52:43 PM PDT by nerdgirl
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To: Uncledave

"I'm not sure this 60 year old Church Lady is so concerned about fitting in. I get the sense she'll work hard and not give much of a hoot what people think of her."

I would like to point out that the reason she has recieved the label "Church Lady", is that the ONLY rationalization we have heard for her nomination is that she goes to an evangelical church. Hardly sufficient reasoning for a supreme court nomination.


55 posted on 10/07/2005 12:53:10 PM PDT by Betaille ("And if the stars burn out there's only fire to blame" -Duran Duran)
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To: uncbob
The very fact that BUSH did NOT expect this backlash shows he is out of touch with the conservative base and is more concerned with Reid and Schumer.

I agree. It is pretty apparent that they were not expecting the response they are getting. That makes me more nervous than the nomination itself.

56 posted on 10/07/2005 12:53:25 PM PDT by Wphile (Keep the UN out of Iraq)
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To: TheDon
It always helps to have people who can exert peer pressure in the "right" way.

I don't see how Miers brings anything to the table in this regard at the Supreme Court. I think the hope is that she will be a reliable follower of Thomas and Scalia.

57 posted on 10/07/2005 12:54:28 PM PDT by workerbee (A person's a person no matter how small.)
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To: aumrl

And you think Miers will sail through with 60 votes ? Why ? Her outstanding qualifications ?

The Democrats could not credibly argue that Roberts did not have the intellectual weight and qualifications for the job. Independent voters respected Roberts and agreed that he was the man for the job. That is why half the Democratic senators ignored the Moveon and ACLU types and voted for him. Nobody outside the Christian Right thinks that Miers has the qualifications for this job.


58 posted on 10/07/2005 12:54:32 PM PDT by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: msnimje
Dirtboy, why don't you tell us why you believe she would be an excellent addition to the Supreme Court and was indeed "the Best Person" (not woman, best person) the President could find?

I will defer to Sowell's column, who said it better than I could:

Thomas Sowell: Republican Senate Is Weak, Not Bush

President Bush has taken on too many tough fights -- Social Security being a classic example -- to be regarded as a man who is personally weak. What is weak is the Republican majority in the Senate.

When it comes to taking on a tough fight with the Senate Democrats over judicial nominations, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist doesn't really have a majority to lead. Before the President nominated anybody, before he even took the oath of office for his second term, Senator Arlen Specter was already warning him not to nominate anyone who would rile up the Senate. Later, Senator John Warner issued a similar warning. It sounded like a familiar Republican strategy of pre-emptive surrender.

Before we can judge how the President played his hand, we have to consider what kind of hand he had to play. It was a weak hand -- and the weakness was in the Republican Senators.

Does this mean that Harriet Miers will not be a good Supreme Court justice if she is confirmed? It is hard to imagine her being worse than Sandra Day O'Connor -- or even as bad.

The very fact that Harriet Miers is a member of an evangelical church suggests that she is not dying to be accepted by the beautiful people, and is unlikely to sell out the Constitution of the United States in order to be the toast of Georgetown cocktail parties or praised in the New York Times. Considering some of the turkeys that Republicans have put on the Supreme Court in the past, she could be a big improvement.

--snip--

The bottom line with any Supreme Court justice is how they vote on the issues before the High Court. It would be nice to have someone with ringing rhetoric and dazzling intellectual firepower. But the bottom line is how they vote. If the President is right about Harriet Miers, she may be the best choice he could make under the circumstances.

---------------

Does Sowell like this reality? Apparently not. Do I like it? No. I would love to see Bush, in a post-nuclear-option Senate, ram JRB down the Dem's throat. But he cannot. That is the reality here. Sowell is smart enough to realize that.

So Bush's critics over this nomination can engage in the luxury of putting forth their dream candidates as an alternative. But the Senate Republicans took that luxury away from Bush.

59 posted on 10/07/2005 12:54:49 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: Sam the Sham
And you think Miers will sail through with 60 votes ? Why ? Her outstanding qualifications ?

No.

Because she is acceptable to the Gang of 14.

And they control the show.

As long as they hold, it will only take 51 votes, because they will prevent the Dems from filibustering.

60 posted on 10/07/2005 12:55:42 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: Betaille

And they have a superb reason to reject her that will be persuasive with independent voters.


61 posted on 10/07/2005 12:55:52 PM PDT by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: CitizenUSA
No doubt she's a competent trial lawyer, too

Another thing about her qualifications, she has only been White House Counsel for 8 months.

62 posted on 10/07/2005 12:55:52 PM PDT by msnimje (If you suspect this post might need a sarcasm tag..... it does!)
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To: Sam the Sham
People with no power bases, like Sowell and Williams, must sing for their supper

Sowell doesn't have to look to anyone to make contributions to his cause. His intellect alone is enough to ensure a decent living.

63 posted on 10/07/2005 12:56:45 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: uncbob
The very fact that BUSH did NOT expect this backlash shows he is out of touch

great point

64 posted on 10/07/2005 12:57:04 PM PDT by nerdgirl
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To: uncbob
The very fact that BUSH did NOT expect this backlash shows he is out of touch with the conservative base and is more concerned with Reid and Schumer

The base does not confirm a nominee. He ran her past the Gang of 14 and they find her acceptable. Which means the filibuster is off the table if that holds.

65 posted on 10/07/2005 12:58:51 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: Uncledave
I'm not sure this 60 year old Church Lady is so concerned about fitting in.

Entirely possible. But with this appointment Miers is going to have "entree" like she has never had in her life. She's a nobody right now, compared to how she'll be seen as a Justice. She wouldn't be the first person to succumb to temptation. Of course, we could say the same about any of the other candidates, it just seems they've had a little more experience dealing with the pressure and proved their steadfastness.

66 posted on 10/07/2005 12:59:18 PM PDT by workerbee (A person's a person no matter how small.)
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To: dirtboy
He already got sandbagged by the damn RINOs once.

Did he go to the American public like Reagan did with a democrat congress

We are talking about a fight for America's future FIGHT
67 posted on 10/07/2005 1:00:00 PM PDT by uncbob
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To: Betaille

WITHDRAW THIS NOMINEE.... CHECK OUT CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER'S PIECE TODAY


68 posted on 10/07/2005 1:00:02 PM PDT by securityMama
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To: dirtboy

You think they won't bail ? You think the Gang of 14 are evangelical Christians ? There is no good reason for them to support the Miers nomination.


69 posted on 10/07/2005 1:00:10 PM PDT by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: Betaille

I'm still ready to bet the town house that Bush
is expecting to make a THIRD USCC nomination.
He's got 3 years left, and Judge John P. Stevens
is 85 years old! I expect to read the old man's
official resignation has hit Bush's desk by Christmas.


70 posted on 10/07/2005 1:00:25 PM PDT by Grendel9 (uick)
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To: Sam the Sham
Nobody outside the Christian Right thinks that Miers has the qualifications for this job.

I'd just like to point out that I fit into that "Christian Right" category, and I don't think she's qualified, either.

71 posted on 10/07/2005 1:01:02 PM PDT by aBootes
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To: msnimje
Another thing about her qualifications, she has only been White House Counsel for 8 months.

She has worked closely with first a governor, and then a president, for eleven years. And she wasn't a functionary, she was an integral part of Bush's team.

How many lawyers have THAT on their resume?

But at the end of the day, only two factors really matter. Will she be a constitutional literalist? And will she have enough humility, character and conviction to hold to that literalism and resist the temptation to add meaning to the Constitution?

72 posted on 10/07/2005 1:01:20 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: dirtboy
The base does not confirm a nominee. He ran her past the Gang of 14 and they find her acceptable. Which means the filibuster is off the table if that holds.

So you are saying Bush expected this backlash and didn't care ?
73 posted on 10/07/2005 1:01:48 PM PDT by uncbob
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To: Sam the Sham
You think they won't bail ? You think the Gang of 14 are evangelical Christians ? There is no good reason for them to support the Miers nomination.

What the hell does the religious faith of the Gang of 14 have to do with it? Sheez.

The Gang of 14 will hold together because they have more power as a group than if they split apart.

74 posted on 10/07/2005 1:02:28 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: aBootes

So do I. And I don't think she's qualified either.

I was making the point that her support base is limited to a portion of the Christian Right.

Given this fact, whatever assurances Bush thinks he has from Specter and McCain are meaningless.


75 posted on 10/07/2005 1:02:42 PM PDT by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: Betaille

Any word yet on how senator Philip Uster is planning to vote?


76 posted on 10/07/2005 1:03:03 PM PDT by Revolting cat! ("In the end, nothing explains anything!")
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To: uncbob
So you are saying Bush expected this backlash and didn't care ?

No, I'm saying it was not his primary concern. He had to find a conservative he could get past the Gang of 14. And that probably wasn't easy, given taht they are all moderates and some of the RINOs were demanding a female nominee.

77 posted on 10/07/2005 1:03:30 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: dirtboy

Religion is the only reason that has been given to support her nomination. Religion is the only qualification that has been offered. So yes, the religious faith of the Gang of 14 (or lack thereof) is a factor.


78 posted on 10/07/2005 1:04:18 PM PDT by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: uncbob
Did he go to the American public like Reagan did with a democrat congress

In case you haven't noticed, Bush does not have the greatest approval ratings right now, and the electorate is strongly divided. And, once again, he's already been sandbagged.

79 posted on 10/07/2005 1:04:45 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: dirtboy
But the Senate Republicans took that luxury away from Bush.

On the contrary. Mr. Bush could nominate anyone he wished to. It is not clear that, after Mr. Robert's hearing, a better qualified nominee would have been rejected. In any case, it is best to actually be defeated before acting defeated.

80 posted on 10/07/2005 1:04:51 PM PDT by aBootes
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To: Sam the Sham
Religion is the only reason that has been given to support her nomination.

Wrong.

Religion is the only qualification that has been offered.

Wrong.

So yes, the religious faith of the Gang of 14 (or lack thereof) is a factor.

False premises lead to false conclusions.

81 posted on 10/07/2005 1:05:42 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: aBootes

"It is not clear that, after Mr. Robert's hearing, a better qualified nominee would have been rejected."

Exactly! The assumption that the senate would have rejected a well-qualified conservative is an absurd rationalization. We just passed one with 78 votes!!!


82 posted on 10/07/2005 1:06:05 PM PDT by Betaille ("And if the stars burn out there's only fire to blame" -Duran Duran)
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To: aBootes
On the contrary. Mr. Bush could nominate anyone he wished to.

And he still has to get them CONFIRMED. You can spout off candidates without having to worry about that.

83 posted on 10/07/2005 1:06:38 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: dirtboy
Could be, he ran her by the "gang of 14" before they began receiving hundreds of emails/letters/phone calls an hour from their constituents pleading with them (demanding?) that they withdraw support for this nominee.

I wonder how many senators have voiced vocal support since this whole thing has broken? How many of the gang of 14?

If anybody has a quick list for us that'd be great.

84 posted on 10/07/2005 1:07:48 PM PDT by nerdgirl
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To: aBootes
It is not clear that, after Mr. Robert's hearing, a better qualified nominee would have been rejected.

Oh, the rumblings were all out there from various key Senators if you bothered to look. Just about every pundit, left and right, agreed that the Dems would give this nominee a harder time than Roberts.

85 posted on 10/07/2005 1:07:57 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: dirtboy
And he still has to get them CONFIRMED. You can spout off candidates without having to worry about that.

On the contrary. I am quite aware of the confirmation process, but I am unwilling to surrender to an unproven generalization. The Gang of 14 has never been tested in the heat of a SC battle. I think there is a reasonable chance they might fail. But we may never know.

86 posted on 10/07/2005 1:10:59 PM PDT by aBootes
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To: nerdgirl
Could be, he ran her by the "gang of 14" before they began receiving hundreds of emails/letters/phone calls an hour from their constituents pleading with them (demanding?) that they withdraw support for this nominee.

I imagine there were some trial balloons sent up beforehand, but that kind of stuff often stays secret.

I wonder how many senators have voiced vocal support since this whole thing has broken? How many of the gang of 14?

I have read that all the members of the gang say she is acceptable. Which means if that holds, no filibuster.

87 posted on 10/07/2005 1:12:16 PM PDT by dirtboy (Drool overflowed my buffer...)
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To: aBootes; dirtboy
In any case, it is best to actually be defeated before acting defeated.

Precisely. If another Roberts had been chosen the Dems would have had the same problem of independent voters vs their activist base and they would have gone with independent voters.

Most Americans accept that the Supreme Court is supposed to consist of first rate legal minds, not cronies trusted for their loyalty. Roberts was a first rate legal mind. Another Roberts would have gotten the same level of independent support.

88 posted on 10/07/2005 1:13:42 PM PDT by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: dirtboy

All of you Constitutionalists might stop and consider this another way. It has occurred to me that Bush met with Senate leaders and devised a strategy to return the appointment and confirmation of the judges to the Constitution and take away the influence of the interest groups. After all, they have no role under the constitution, at all.


89 posted on 10/07/2005 1:13:58 PM PDT by ClaireSolt (.)
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To: dirtboy
Oh, the rumblings were all out there from various key Senators if you bothered to look. Just about every pundit, left and right, agreed that the Dems would give this nominee a harder time than Roberts.On the contrary. I do know who was "rumbling." And having listened to "rumbling" before, it does not frighten.

The question, however, it not one of a "harder time," but of confirmation or not. I think there are some who would have made it and many who would have been willing to try.

90 posted on 10/07/2005 1:14:15 PM PDT by aBootes
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To: dirtboy

Really ?

The only reasons that have been given to support this nomination by the administration is that she is "a good Christian". They have not had the nerve to try to tout her experience and credentials. Is that going to appeal to independent voters ?


91 posted on 10/07/2005 1:15:35 PM PDT by Sam the Sham (A conservative party tough on illegal immigration could carry California in 2008)
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To: CitizenUSA

In my opinion, Bush should have picked a nomination to unite his base. Even if we would have lost in the Senate, sometimes it's important to fight the fight. Who knows? We might have even won the fight, but you'll never know since he picked a lackluster crony instead.
***
Exactly! And the nutjob libs would finally show their true colors.


92 posted on 10/07/2005 1:16:36 PM PDT by jdhljc169
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To: dirtboy
Ok it's one thing for the group as a whole to let out a statement saying they support her, that protects individual members a bit - but which senators have stepped up to bat for this woman? I've tried Googling my own senators in the news to see if Stevens or Murkowski has publically stated that they support her - and I can't find anything other than a very early statement by Stevens, reported on Oct 3, that

"said he's glad President Bush chose a "qualified woman" to succeed Sandra Day O'Connor"

I wonder if Stevens has said anything else, or even repeated that statement since the mierda has hit the fan.

93 posted on 10/07/2005 1:16:45 PM PDT by nerdgirl
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To: aBootes
Sorry All, this is how it should have been formatted. My apologies for the eye strain.

Oh, the rumblings were all out there from various key Senators if you bothered to look. Just about every pundit, left and right, agreed that the Dems would give this nominee a harder time than Roberts.

On the contrary. I do know who was "rumbling." And having listened to "rumbling" before, it does not frighten. The question, however, it not one of a "harder time," but of confirmation or not. I think there are some who would have made it and many who would have been willing to try.

94 posted on 10/07/2005 1:17:35 PM PDT by aBootes
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To: nerdgirl

"Current" loyalty? More like a decade of loyalty.

It all comes down to whether or not you think President Bush is a good judge of character. How have his other judicial picks turned out? How have his executive picks been? Given his track history, I will trust his judgement in this case.


95 posted on 10/07/2005 1:19:17 PM PDT by TheDon (The Democratic Party is the party of TREASON!)
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To: ClaireSolt
Bush...devised a strategy to...take away the influence of the interest groups.

How did you get to this idea?

96 posted on 10/07/2005 1:21:13 PM PDT by aBootes
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To: TheDon

I don't trust men as much as track records - in this case hers (or lack thereof), not his.


97 posted on 10/07/2005 1:21:42 PM PDT by nerdgirl
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To: TheDon
It all comes down to whether or not you think President Bush is a good judge of character.

I'd say that character is a necessary, but not a sufficient, virtue in SC justices. It takes far more than character to write and persuasively defend lasting opinions.

But your point does remind me of Leonard Leo's remark that Ms. Miers would likely move the court to the right but have no desireable impact on the national legal culture.

98 posted on 10/07/2005 1:24:37 PM PDT by aBootes
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To: workerbee

Of course it's a guess if she'll bit from the apple. But if you were to write down qualities of those least likely to be tempted what would they be?

Would an insider or outside be more tempted? I think an young insider would be.


99 posted on 10/07/2005 1:24:56 PM PDT by Uncledave
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To: msnimje
What is really bothering me more and more is the Administration pushing her history with the ABA as her most impressive accomplishments.

What bothers me is people misstating facts like this.

They are not saying that is her most impressive accomplishment, they are saying correctly it is one of her accomplishments.

I also am bothered by people who mock and deride her experience with the Texas Lottery when they clearly have no idea what her responsibilities and achievements there were. It's another of her accomplishments.

100 posted on 10/07/2005 1:26:23 PM PDT by cyncooper
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