The following is President Bush’s response to Harriet Miers withdraw
(compliments of Raw Story):
Today, I have reluctantly accepted Harriet Miers decision to withdraw her
nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States.
I nominated Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court because of her
extraordinary legal experience, her character, and her conservative judicial
philosophy. Throughout her career, she has gained the respect and admiration
of her fellow attorneys. She has earned a reputation for fairness and total
integrity. She has been a leader and a pioneer in the American legal
profession. She has worked in important positions in state and local
government and in the bar. And for the last five years, she has served with
distinction and honor in critical positions in the Executive Branch.
I understand and share her concern, however, about the current state of
the Supreme Court confirmation process. It is clear that senators would not
be satisfied until they gained access to internal documents concerning
advice provided during her tenure at the White House disclosures that would
undermine a president’s ability to receive candid counsel. Harriet Miers’
decision demonstrates her deep respect for this essential aspect of the
constitutional separation of powers and confirms my deep respect and
admiration for her.
I am grateful for Harriet Miers’ friendship and devotion to our country.
And I am honored that she will continue to serve our nation as White House
My responsibility to fill this vacancy remains. I will do so in a timely
23 is the magic number now. 23 days ago was when President Bush held that
Rose Garden press conference and addressed his nomination. It was the day after
he actually announced the nomination and kind of had people wondering why he
took to the podium, something he is not very fond of.
In his address 23 days ago, President Bush tried to start the finger pointing
game. His finger was once again pointing at the Democrats and left leaning
special interest groups that might oppose Miers. The following is his response
to one of the questions regarding her nomination:
Q Thank you, Mr. President. Some conservatives have said that you
did not pick someone like Scalia and Thomas because you shied away from a
battle with the Democrats. Is there any truth to that? And are you worried
about charges of cronyism?
THE PRESIDENT: Well, I just described to you why I picked Harriet.
I’d be glad to go over it again if you like. In other words, she’s eminently
qualified. She shares my judicial philosophy. She is a pioneer when it comes
to the law. She’s an extraordinary woman.
The decision as to whether or not there will be a fight is up to the
Democrats. They get to decide whether or not the special interests will
decide the tone of the debate. Look, I’m upbeat about the tone of the
hearings, but except I’m mindful of the fact that somebody as eminently as
qualified as John Roberts did have — half the Democrat caucus voted against
Full transcript available
So is the minority Democrats the reason Harriet Miers decided not to go after
the job on our top court? According to President Bush’s statement, he is
pointing his finger at all of Senate.
Actually when President Bush made this statement on October 4, the Democrats
were somewhat in support of Harriet Miers. President Bush, who constantly calls
any objection “partisan politics”, is in fact the one who started this off as a
partisan fight. The day he made his Rose Garden speech, there was already a
strong objection growing in the conservative movement over Miers’ nomination.
In private, some conservative leaders voiced concern that Miers could
become “another David Souter,” the Supreme Court justice picked by President
Bush’s father who has turned out to be a reliable member of the court’s
liberal wing. They pointed to her 1988 contributions to Democrat Al Gore’s
presidential campaign, the reelection campaign of Sen. Lloyd Bentsen
(D-Tex.) and the Democratic National Committee. The 1988 Democratic platform
endorsed abortion rights.
That appeared in the Washington Post on the day of his Rose Garden speech.
Already the conservatives were coining Miers as another Souter. They also had
objection to her contributions to the Al Gore campaign in 1988.
Harry Reid, the Democrat minority leader was also in support of Miers at the
time of this speech. I remember watching his press conference and hearing him
blame Democrats for any fights then realized that the President in fact does not
watch the news or read newspapers. If he had then perhaps he would have been
better informed during that press conference that the strong voice of opposition
to his nomination was actually coming from his own party.
President Bush has shown his weak leadership skills once again. He was hoping
to wage another war against the Democrats and pound the minority party into the
ground when in actuality; he has now been left without his scapegoat. Sadly, we
will now see a very staunch conservative appointed to the court, but at least we
will know what we are getting.