Dell Gines has an interesting theory on why Bush nominated Harriet Miers for the Supreme Court:
But I believe Bush was reasonably sure she wouldn’t win. Knowing that a fight over the next nomination was imminent under any scenario, after the ease of the Roberts confirmation, and that the democrats would have guns blazing, or else they would look weak and complacent to their constituents, you let a point man (woman in this case) take the heaviest round of ammo. (source)
I’m not sure if GWB is that politically smart but it is an interesting theory. Bush is taking a lot of flack from his conservative base and I think at some point Democrats need to step out and oppose this nomination as well. The fact that we know nothing of Harriet Miers' qualification and what paper trail there is of her is guarded by attorney-client privilege should give us pause. How can Bush assert that Miers is qualified then not release the papers where she gave opinions on issue regarding the constitution?
If I were a Dem Senator I would do this: I would oppose the nomination on the grounds that she is not qualified and I would acknowledge that the next nomination might be more conservative than I would like. However, I would state that I am more concerned with the integrity of the court than I am with the philosophy. I would also state that it is reasonable for Senators to debate the philosophy of a nominee but it is unacceptable to debate the qualifications of a Supreme Court nominee.
What I know about the law is derived from hours sitting in front of the television watching Law & Order. So I really can’t speak to judicial philosophy. However, I do know that Constitutional law is very complicated and when a Supreme Court nominee makes a mistake on a questionnaire with what many regarded as a simple Constitutional question, I say that there is a problem.
How about a sports analogy: The Chicago Bears has a head coach opening and the GM is on the search. The conservatives are calling for a coach who runs the West Coast (WC) offense and the Liberals want a coach who believes in a balanced (BL) style offense. There are several prominent assistant coaches who run the WC offense and the GM is a man who believes in the WC offense. Now, these assistants worked with very successful coaches where the WC offense was THE philosophy. So when the Bears head coach position is available, the assumption is made that the GM will select who is from the WC lineage.
The GM doesn’t do that. He picks a high school football coach. No one knows anything about this coach except that he’s played with the owner when they were high school together and a few of the teams he coached won state championships. The GM states that he knows the man and that he has football common sense. The conservatives are furious. High school is one thing, but this is the NFL. No way will they allow this to happen. The protest in on. Now, there are some conservatives that choose to trust the GM, but most don’t.
What do the Liberals do? It’s nice to see the Conservatives pissed off but this is our team too. Do we really want a high school coach, who may very well be a nice guy, coaching the Chicago Bears? I don’t think so. We don’t know if he’ll run the WC or BL offense, but we do know that he doesn’t have the background that qualifies him for a head coaching position in the NFL.
Now, we very well may end up with a coach that runs the WC offense – but Bill Walsh went to Super Bowl with the WC offense so there is some hope. He didn’t have to run it in Chicago where passing the ball in December is tad amount to throwing and catching a block of ice, but at least we’ll have hope.
Harriet Miers is out of her league. It’s time we tell the truth and save the home team from making a mistake that may set the franchise back decades. If Harriet Miers gets on the bench then any bum with a law degree and has connection to the President is eligible for a Supreme Court seat. We wouldn’t accept this crap with a beloved sports team so we certainly shouldn’t accept with our country.