Patterico's Pontifications


Dafydd ab Hugh on the Political Consequences of a Miers Defeat

Filed under: Judiciary,Politics — Patterico @ 4:15 pm

Dafydd ab Hugh has an interesting post titled Would a Miers Fight Hurt the GOP in 2006? His conclusion: yes. Dafydd says that, given that there is a Republican majority in the Senate, the defeat of Miers’s nomination would “put the mark of Cain on the GOP, the scarlet-L for LOSERS,” and make Bush “look like a right-wing sock puppet,” alienating the squishy swing voters who decide most elections.

What do you think?

P.S. I am skeptical of this claim. I’ll tell you this: if the nomination is not withdrawn, a lot of people are going to stop becoming as active in supporting the Republican cause. You can lecture them all you like, but realistically, it’s still going to happen. I don’t see that accounted for in Dafydd’s analysis. Nor am I that certain that a nomination withdrawn because thet party determines the candidate is not the best available hurts the party’s standing much in the public’s eyes.

I’m still feeling myself drawn towards open opposition. Not that I think it makes much difference. This party has too rarely shown the courage of its convictions in the past, and I doubt it will start now. In the end, I suspect she’ll be confirmed. And we’ll see what kind of damage that does.

Sessions Is Lukewarm on Miers

Filed under: Judiciary — Patterico @ 3:32 pm

The AP reports: Sessions has doubts about Bush nominee. (Via Howard.)

Harriet Miers: Water Girl

Filed under: Humor,Judiciary — Patterico @ 2:52 pm

Editorial cartoons are often a good insight into how issues are seen by the general public. This cartoon about Harriet Miers should not be enouraging for Bush. (Via Howard Bashman.)


Filed under: Blogging Matters — Patterico @ 2:48 pm

How come nobody sends brisket to me?

A Conversation Between Two Dudes

Filed under: Judiciary — Patterico @ 2:39 pm

This is the same point made in this post, just in a different way:


With Friends Like These . . .

Filed under: Judiciary — Patterico @ 2:21 pm

How can you know something about whether Harriet Miers is the best pick for the Supreme Court? Look at what her friends have to say about her:


Quiz: Who Said It?

Filed under: Judiciary,Race — Patterico @ 1:20 pm

Who said it?

Quote #1:

In order to cultivate a set of leaders with legitimacy in the eyes of the citizenry, it is necessary that the path to leadership be visibly open to talented and qualified individuals of every race and ethnicity. All members of our heterogeneous society must have confidence in the openness and integrity of the educational institutions that provide this training. . . . [L]aw schools “cannot be effective in isolation from the individuals and institutions with which the law interacts.” . . . Access to legal education (and thus the legal profession) must be inclusive of talented and qualified individuals of every race and ethnicity, so that all members of our heterogeneous society may participate in the educational institutions that provide the training and education necessary to succeed in America.

Quote #2:

Our legal community must reflect our population as a whole and it should be a role model for all those who would examine us.

. . . .

Although we had been hopeful that there would be an increased enrollment of minorities in law schools it has not happened. The goal of the legal community to reflect the community at large cannot be achieved without a significant increase in the number of minorities graduating from law schools. Specific efforts are needed to encourage minority students to attend college and law school.

(Answers in the extended entry, or just click on the links.)


Maybe This Should Tell You Something

Filed under: Judiciary — Angry Clam @ 12:54 pm

[Posted by The Angry Clam]

Orin Kerr highlights two interesting quotes over at the Volokh Conspiracy.

First, there’s this, taken from a New York Times article:

Sean Rushton, executive director of the Committee for Justice, said generating enthusiasm for Ms. Miers was proving difficult because “anytime we put out something positive about her it gets shot to pieces by all our allies and the blogs.”

Gee, I don’t know, but if that kept happening to me, I’d wonder what it was I was missing. I mean, hey guys, why don’t they just keep reprinting our press releases and talking about how awesome she is? C’mon, Bush picked her!

I won’t go on to mention the second quote, which involves Sen. Specter’s statement that Miers isn’t ready to handle high-level constitutional questions such as inquiries about her views on recent Commerce Clause jurisprudence. I could, but won’t, explain how shocking this is for someone to be called to rule on those very issues. I won’t mention how this means that she will likely be a slave to her law clerks, who control the flow of information and research to her desk. I’ll even skip over how this is likely to lead to her being a “pragmatic” and infuriating justice like O’Connor.

(Sorry about that last bit, it’s a rainy Saturday here at the Clam Compound, and, being so angry at Bush, I felt that I should re-read Cicero’s In Catilinam orations. He loved his praeteritio.)

Whose Fault Is This Really? (Part Two)

Filed under: Judiciary — Patterico @ 12:38 pm

Setpember 21 seems like a long time ago — especially when you read something like this piece by Paul Weyrich, talking about the then-upcoming nomination to replace O’Connor:

The far left, which dominates the Democratic Party, could attempt to defeat the next nominee based upon the assumption that President Bush would nominate an individual that conservatives could support. I believe the president will so nominate. First, having spoken with the president about this issue, I am convinced he sincerely believes that the court needs justices who would interpret the law, not make law. Second, why would he not nominate a conservative? The president leads a fragile coalition of conservatives held together for one reason: judges. If a so-called consensus nominee were appointed to replace Justice O’Connor, as the left demands, many in the president’s coalition would defect. Over immigration. Over spending. Over the war. The president knows this. I am confident he would not disappoint us.


As I have already noted, the reaction of conservatives to this nomination was entirely predictable. It’s not our fault we’re disappointed — it’s the President’s.

UPDATE: Instapundit agrees:

[T]he Bush Administration push[ed] an underwhelming nominee without thinking about how it would play. . . My problem is that there’s no particular reason to think she’d be a good Supreme Court Justice. The Bush Administration should have had a lot of those reasons handy before nominating someone who was sure to raise those kinds of questions.


Miers: Let’s Not Pretend She’s Dumb

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:16 pm

I think I need to correct a misimpression about my views of Harriet Miers’s qualifications.

A friend recently told me that I have said some “mean” things about Miers on this blog. I asked him for examples, and he couldn’t provide specifics. I reminded him that I have already expressed my agreement with Pejman Yousefzadeh:

Harriet Miers is an excellent litigator and the kind of person that a law firm would turn to in order to be managed. No one doubts that she is intelligent and accomplished. But saying that does not mean that we can also say that she is Supreme Court material. Too many people conflate the two.

When I read this passage to my friend, he said that he remembered these comments, but that they have gotten lost in the shuffle.

I don’t want to have to keep repeating this, but let me say it once here: Miers’s resume in many ways similar to my own. Where it is different, it is generally because she has had more impressive work experiences than I have.

So unless I am saying I am a dummy, how could I claim that her resume says that she is?


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