Democrats around Washington are already claiming that a Bush nomination to fill the O’C seat this week precludes the appropriate length of consultation with Senators.
What’s so hard about giving a Senator three names and asking them for feedback and to prioritize by level of support? It’s not difficult, but Democrats want to turn it into a kumbaya moment.
The fact is the White House has been consulting with both Republicans and Democrats for several weeks now on this pick. There have been a series of meetings up on Capitol Hill, and Arlen Specter has had breakfast with the President within the last couple of days. Part of the motivation for that meeting, according to White House sources, was to thank Specter for his handling of the Roberts nomination process, but to also consult on possible new picks, as well.
According to some Democrats on the Hill, Harry Reid has been consulted too, though his input was said to be … big surprise … negative.