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“The White House seemed to be expecting Rehnquist first, that was what my boss was getting briefed on,” says a staffer for a Senator sitting on the Judiciary Committee. “We were told Rehnquist in July, possibly later this year.”
Rumors are already swirling about a possible third retirement after November. The most likely would be Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who according to former Supreme Court clerks may be in poorer health than Justice Rehnquist.
“That’s the seat for [Albert] Gonzales, that third seat if it opens up,” says Department of Justice staffer. “All of this depends on how the first nomination goes, but the assumption here is that this is not the time for Gonzales.”
As of this writing federal Judge Emilio Garza is the frontrunner to replace O’Conner. There are several indicators, which may all be red herrings, but that is half the fun.
First, Texas Sen. John Cornyn met with the President, as well as Chief of Staff Andrew Card and several members of the White House Counsel office early Friday. Up on Capitol Hill, rumors were quickly swirling that Cornyn had been offered the Supreme Court nomination. Those rumors were fueled when his senior staff essentially went underground for several hours.
But later in the day, Cornyn was making television appearances to discuss the nominations process, as well as placing an op-ed about the process.
Cornyn is now believed to be the President’s point person in the Senate to help measure the level of support for potential nominees. “He’s the President’s ‘consultation’ guy,” says a Senate leadership source. “That’s how we’re proceeding. If he is the nominee, we will be surprised again. But that’s nothing new with this White House.”
Cornyn and Garza know each other from their days in Texas and other legal circles.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?