06 Oct 2005 On Miers, White House Arguments Improve — Somewhat
My sense is that the White House is having a better day today than yesterday in making pro-Harriet Miers arguments. In one conference call I listened in on, which, as it was not off the record, you will probably not read about in the Washington Post, there was a tantalizing hint that one of the reasons the White house wants Miers is that Bush wants someone in Court conferences who understands the national security implications of certain court cases.
If this is truly a motivation (as it may not be), it is a much better argument than “trust me.”
On the flip side, another argument trotted out by a Miers supporter should be retired immediately. That argument is that Miers is a Texan, that Texans above all believe in loyalty, therefore, Miers will always vote on the court in a manner loyal to George W. Bush.
Putting aside the dubious reliably of the Texan-as-superhero-archetype as a guide for making Supreme Court appointments, this contention utterly misses the point. We don’t want a nominee who will be loyal to Bush or any person or political party. We want a nominee who will be loyal to the Constitution as written.
In fairness, it should be noted that the person making this argument is not on the White House payroll, and it is impossible to tell on a telephone conference call if the Administration representatives participating were cringing as this argument was being made.
Addendum: If this American Spectator piece by John Wohlstetter is correct, the national security angle may not work for Ms. Miers. Meanwhile, the Capitol Hill newspaper The Hill is noting parts of a piece on this blog in which a young conservative who used to work at the White House (who also is the son of Congressman Jim Ryun) describes his effort to get a Christian Christmas card message approved by Harriet Miers.