The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Saturday, October 15, 2005

Conason on Miers

I know I'm not the only one to be all confused and suspicious over the reactionaries' attacks on Miers-- is it a clever fakeout? The stealth nomination of a little-known but extremist candidate?

Well, good ol' Joe Conason makes me feel slightly better about the situation. But it leaves an important question unanswered: if Miers goes down in flames, how do we combat the inevitable Bork in sheep's clothing that will rise up in her wake? Also, as he points out, the DLC contingent (plus some writers for The New Republic) seems content to approve this woman simply because she's a cipher. Preposterous, but true. Be sure to let your senators know that mediocrity isn't acceptable.

For senators who claim to uphold the framers' intentions, the president has left no choice but to reject Harriet Miers. Both her nomination and the covert campaign to win her confirmation are constitutional offenses that should be intolerable to the Senate.

When Bush first announced her selection, Miers was so little known outside the White House that the demurrals by conservative pundits sounded insular and ideologically extreme. Even when stated as objections to her scant record in constitutional law, the conservative complaints about Miers were initially suspect. Her sin seemed to be that she doesn't belong to the Federalist Society, she isn't a "movement conservative," and she may not prove to be a sufficiently predictable ally of Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas. In fact, the suspicions and bruised sensitivities of Washington's right-wing clique almost seemed like a positive recommendation.

As information about Miers emerged, however, the case against her took on greater substance, and the charge of unalloyed cronyism grew more convincing. Her fawning notes to Bush, her opaque and meaningless prose, her lack of judicial or scholarly qualifications, and her strange career in the White House, where she reportedly bungled her way up to the Office of Counsel -- all combined to create the impression of a woman chosen solely for her loyalty to the president.