For fresh insight into the Miers mess, take a look at something I've just received:
One beyond the Beltway friend has sent a tortured but hopeful explanation of the recent nomination events.
He contends that after John Roberts, any nominee was going to be portrayed as "under qualified" by comparison. Accordingly, perhaps the White House felt it was necessary to run someone through the process to "lower the bar" again. Of course, the goal of nominating this person was NOT actually to get the person confirmed; in fact, it was just the opposite -- have this person NOT be confirmed but simply make things easier for the NEXT nominee to be confirmed (by comparison with THIS person, not with John Roberts).
However, he does admit that whoever was put up for this role would, obviously, take a rather severe beating and have to endure humiliation that most people wouldn't/shouldn't have to endure. Thus, that person would have to be someone tremendously loyal to the administration, someone who, when the whole thing was over, didn't really care about having a future role in the public eye, and someone who could be properly taken care of/rewarded for doing this after his/her nomination went down in flames. Then, after that person withdrew/got rejected, and after a suitable pundit feeding frenzy, the REAL nominee -- say someone qualified -- would be put forward.
He concluded with -- "Far fetched? Maybe...nevertheless, it makes a whole lot more sense than the explanations coming from the White House."
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