The White House Press Corps didn’t beat around the bush this morning, broaching the question to the President that is very much “in the air” around Washington these last couple days, including at the NR dinner last night.
Q Thank you, sir. The criticism from some conservatives of Harriet Miers is continuing and getting rather sharp, as you know. Are you willing to rule out ever letting her nomination be withdrawn?
PRESIDENT BUSH: Harriet Miers is an extraordinary nominee. She is a very bright woman. She is a pioneer in the law in Texas. In other words, she was the first woman hire of her firm, first partner of the firm, she’s the first head of the Texas Bar Association. I mean, she has got a record of accomplishment that is extraordinary, in my judgment. She is a woman of deep character and strength. She is — she didn’t come from the bench, but so did — you know, a lot of other people didn’t come from the bench when they were named for the Supreme Court. I would ask people to look at Byron White, for example, or Judge Rehnquist, himself.
And I’m confident she’s going to be a Supreme Court Judge who will not legislate from the bench, and will strictly interpret the Constitution. I am incredibly proud of my friend being willing to take on this task. She’s going to be a great judge.
Q So are you ruling it out, any withdrawal?
PRESIDENT BUSH: No, she is going to be on the bench, she’ll be confirmed — and when she’s on the bench people will see a fantastic woman who is honest, open, humble and capable of being a great Supreme Court Judge.