The Spectacle Blog

We Can Work It Out

By on 10.27.05 | 11:29AM

Say what you will about Harriet Miers's haters, her withdrawal went exactly according to the exit strategy graciously proposed by Charles Krauthammer last week:

Sen. Lindsey Graham has been a staunch and public supporter of this nominee. Yet on Wednesday he joined Brownback in demanding privileged documents from Miers's White House tenure.

Finally, a way out: irreconcilable differences over documents.

...But there is no way that any president would release this kind of information -- "policy documents" and "legal analysis" -- from such a close confidante. It would forever undermine the ability of any president to get unguarded advice.

That creates a classic conflict, not of personality, not of competence, not of ideology, but of simple constitutional prerogatives...

Right at the top of the AP dispatch on Miers's withdrawal we have the President in his statement practically reading from Krauthammer's column:

Send to Kindle

Wobbly on Free-Market Economics

By on 10.27.05 | 10:56AM

The Journal editorial page gives Bush a merited scolding for reversing on Davis-Bacon (sub. req'd):

The move can only increase the cost and slow the pace of reconstruction. And as an act of unprincipled political calculation it ranks right up there with the decision to impose tariffs on imported steel during Mr. Bush's first term.
Send to Kindle

That Loud Pounding You Hear

By on 10.27.05 | 10:53AM

Is opportunity knocking at the president's door. Now that Miers is gone, I expect that the president will nominate someone of such stellar credentials and proven conservative judicial philosophy that we can all unite behind him (or her). This is a recognition of the reality that conservatives have fought for three decades for this moment, when the court can be turned from judicial activism, from the trend to look to Europe for "enlightentment" and back to originalism.

Send to Kindle


By on 10.27.05 | 10:26AM

Both White House and Senate sources now confirm that while the President did meet with Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist yesterday, it was a call between Frist and the President last night that doomed the Miers nomination.

According to White House sources, Frist informed the President that the nomination simply was not holding up and that it was placing Republicans in a difficult position. The news was not taken well, but the speedy withdrawal is a sign that the White House understood the situation.

Send to Kindle

If You’re Having Second Thoughts…

By on 10.27.05 | 10:06AM

...Just keep in mind that Harry Reid is upset:

The radical right wing of the Republican Party killed the Harriet Miers nomination. Apparently, Ms. Miers did not satisfy those who want to pack the Supreme Court with rigid ideologues.

Send to Kindle

Early Guesses

By on 10.27.05 | 9:59AM

One name already surfacing for the now-open Supreme Court slot is 6th Circuit Judge Jeffrey Sutton, who faced withering attacks during his confirmation hearing from Sen. Patrick Leahy. Barely 45, he has had a remarkable judicial career from a clerkship with Scalia, to state and federal court experience.

The usual names will be floated once again, Mahoney, Alito, Estrada and Jones.

Tonight, Justice Antonin Scalia speaks at The American Spectator's Washington Club dinner. It will be interesting to see what he has to say about the current environment in Washington leading into this next nomination.

Send to Kindle

Document Hunt

By on 10.27.05 | 9:40AM

It's not clear to us what documents the White House and Miers are claiming they would not release to the Judiciary Committee. On Tuesday, the White House sent clear indications to a number of Republican Senators that some policy documents prepared by Miers prior to her elevation to the Counsel to the President post would be released. Those were considered by Republicans to be far more important than her Counsel memos, because they would be dealt with policy development, and might have been more revealing on her overall philosophy.

Send to Kindle