Monday, October 03, 2005

Bush Names New Supreme Court Nominee

Here we go again.

President Bush nominated Harriet E. Miers, the White House counsel, as his choice to replace Justice Sandra Day O'Connor this morning, his second nominee for the Supreme Court. Harriet Miers, White House counsel, was named to replace retiring Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.

Ms. Miers, 60, a longtime confidant of the president's, has never been a judge, and therefore lacks a long history of judicial rulings that could reveal ideological tendencies. Her positions on such ideologically charged issues as abortion and affirmative action are not clear.
Is it a coincidence that both of Bush’s court picks are ideologically untested? At least Roberts had a few years on the Circuit Court. Miers has never been a judge at all. Plus, when the criticism about Miers’s positions on key issues starts flying, as it’s bound to, Miers needs to look no further than the newly minted Roberts Precedent (“I was an attorney, I was expressing the opinion of my client,” etc.) to explain herself into ambiguity on everything from abortion to torture.

While the White House will probably tout the fact that Miers is a woman, that doesn’t mean much in and of itself. After all, Bush the First named Clarence Thomas to replace Thorogood Marshall, maintaining the politically important "diversity" balance of the Court while pushing it to the right ideologically.

--Matthew McCoy