Confirm Them reports on a New Republic review of a new book by Joan Biskupic about Justice O’Connor. From the review:
. . .Starr had committed a huge error. On April 29, 1970, O’Connor had voted to repeal Arizona’s anti-abortion law, and two prominent Phoenix newspapers publicly reported her vote. When asked by Biskupic to explain his oversight, “Starr said he had no reason to check local newspapers to see if her vote had been recorded. If Starr had taken such a step he would have discovered that the proposed legislation was front-page news and the subject of considerable controversy in Arizona eleven years earlier–and that O’Connor had voted for the measure to decriminalize abortion.” Instead of undertaking his own independent inquiry, Biskupic observes, “Starr had taken O’Connor’s word for everything.” In so doing, he had smoothed her way to a nomination that almost certainly would have been denied her had those old news clippings been discovered….
It’s hard to imagine such an oversight like this having much effect in the age of the blogosphere. The oversight would have been corrected within days.
Had Harriet Miers been nominated in 1981, she likely would have sailed through the Senate. Now that we have an “Army of Davids” with a universe of facts at their fingertips, the world is a different place.
UPDATE: Commenter steve tries to burst my bubble, and succeeds, by noting that O’Connor’s vote was indeed disclosed during her confirmation proceedings.