Right and Left Weigh in On Miers Withdrawal

Here's the letter Miers wrote to the president. It is, indeed, reliant on the executive privilege argument.

Libertarian Debater Julian Sanchez writes in Reason magazine's Hit and Run blog that the exit strategy of executive privilege combined with the "(frankly rather serious)" recusal question has been advocated by conservative bloggers. (Perhaps I should amend my last post to say, "Krauthammer and likeminded bloggers win!")

On the right, Blogs for Bush offers a rundown of blogger reactions to the announcement of Miers's withdrawal and the GOPbloggers give a miniature eulogy of the Miers nomination.

On the left, Armando at Daily Kos looks back on what various media reports/commentators said a Miers withdrawal would mean for the president. The consensus, Armando says, was that it would indicate weakness. TalkLeft applauds Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid's reaction to the withdrawal -- "The radical right wing of the Republican Party killed the Harriet Miers nomination. Apparently, Ms. Miers did not satisfy those who want to pack the Supreme Court with rigid ideologues."

In response to my last post, Debater Ib comments, "another story that needs to be cushioned is the release of the Volker [sic] report on the UN Oil for Food kerfufel (great new word!) how many Bush/Cheney associates, donors, cronies will be identified in the report?" Well, Ib, from what I've been hearing, the number of American companies implicated in the Volcker report is a small percentage of the total, but your question is a good one. We'll keep an eye on it. If it turns out there are links to Cheney -- even if tenuous -- it could only add fuel to the firestorm of rumors about his possible resignation.

(More on Cheney late tomorrow, once things with Miers have calmed down and we know what's happening with indictments in the leak case... and after I've fed my dogs. Priorities, you know.)

Add your two cents to the Debate here. If you've got suggestions for commentary I should check out regarding Miers, or the leak scandal, or the Volcker report, or the DeLay indictment, or anything else -- lots going on right now, eh? -- definitely send me an e-mail.

By Emily Messner |  October 27, 2005; 12:54 PM ET  | Category:  Issue Updates
Previous: A Pundit Scoreboard on the Miers Withdrawal | Next: Will Bush's Base Stand By Their Man?


Please email us to report offensive comments.

The White House stiffed the Senate when it requested certain papers from John Roberts. To now say that such a request is a deal-breaker in the Miers case shows how utterly flimsy that argument is.

Posted by: Dean | October 27, 2005 01:17 PM

It is a great word, but it's spelled kerfuffle. Do bloggers not have editors (or dictionaries)?

Posted by: Steven Lane | October 27, 2005 01:59 PM

don't you just love the left? Can't say anything good about Bush, and can't say anything good about a professional woman who stands on principle and gives up an opportunity to be a Supreme Court Judge. She believes in the Client/Attorney confidentiality. None of us, even if we were President or Mayor or citizen, wants our confidential adivsors to have to report what they say. I applaud Miers for withdrawing. I disdain the left. The left simply hates. They hate losing political races--they hate Bush, and mostly they hate because they haven't a clue how to regain political office again.

Posted by: Annandale, VA | October 27, 2005 03:56 PM

don't kid yourself, annandale - the democrats will certainly step into the void left by this fiasco of an administraton ... it is only a matter of time before indictments, resignations and scandals fill the airwaves and the american people take back their government from the cron-mongers currently in power.

Posted by: msfbecfin, irvine, ca | October 27, 2005 04:09 PM

I suppose one ought to feel sorry for Miers. She has been treated shabbily by the conservative Republicans. But then, anyone hitching their wagon to that arrogant s.o.b. President Bush deserves what he/she gets.

Posted by: candide | October 27, 2005 04:38 PM

I don't know what there is to be happy about. Meirs was probably a sheep in sheep's clothing. The next nominee may be a wolf. This was partly a knock against cronyism. The President welched on his promise to be a uniter, not a divider. I don't see why he can't welch on appointing a justice in the mold of Thomas or Scalia. If the next nominee is a competent firebrand, does the ensuing struggle galvanize the Administration's fractious coalition or further weaken the Administration for being beholden to the radical right? Rather than risk it, Bush should appoint a superbly qualified mainstream candidate to replace the moderate swing vote of Justice O'Connor.

Posted by: iwontreadthis | October 27, 2005 04:54 PM

It is amazing how they took the Krauthammer Exit.

Personally, I'd prefer the right come out and reveal their true selves. I.e, they interested only in packing the Court with extremist religious conservatives who are way out of line with the mainstream America. If they appoint a frothing at the mouth right-winger determined to overrule Roe v. Wade, Americans are going to despair of the administration a lot more than they already are. I think it'd be the best thing to happen. Poll after poll shows Americans are uncomfortable with abortion, but they are even more uncomfortable with government issuing religious edicts.

Posted by: Yep | October 27, 2005 07:33 PM

Meirs is simply not qualified. Her resignation letter was poorly written, unclear and gramatically awkward. Would hate to read her opinions.

Posted by: looking from abroad | October 27, 2005 08:52 PM

Sorry Annandale, but you're barking up the wrong tree. With Miers' resume and background, she and the President should have known that the executive privilege issue would come up. Miers was the President's legal counsel for years and that's where her most relevant work product was generated. Don't want to give that up? Don't go foe the Supreme Court. This is a simple conflict of interest matter that any judge -- or qualified judicial candidate -- would have seen coming a million miles away. That things got as bad as they did simply shows how incompetent Miers and the President are.

Posted by: Andy | October 28, 2005 12:09 AM

Harriet Miers main strength was also what did her nomination in: she was tightly tied to George W. Bush. Personally, I saw the nomination as a brazen attempt to put someone on the Court who would insulate the President from potential legal difficulties in the future, both of a personal and policy nature. The privileged connection between Ms. Miers and Mr. Bush would raise its head time and again as cases involving this administration and its policies came before the Court. I, for one, would not trust the President's former personal attorney to choose to recuse herself, or even come to the bench with a fair and open mind. It's for the best that her nomination has been withdrawn (and worth noting that Gonzales has the same fatal flaw).

Posted by: Mark Adams | October 28, 2005 12:10 AM

Annandale is barking up the wrong tree. Given Miers' resume and background, it was completely forseeble that executive privilege would come into play. She's never been a judge, she's hardly published anything of substance, and she's spent years working for the President. Where else would the Senate look for information about her?

If Miers and the President didn't want to argue about privilege issues, then they shouldn't have put her forward. Any judge -- or qualified judicial candidate -- would have seen this problem coming from the outset. It's called conflict of interest. Thoughtful people deal with it every day. That Miers and the President were apparently tripped up just goes to show how incompetent they are.

Posted by: Andy | October 28, 2005 12:18 AM

Here's to a competent firebrand, who can write readable opinions. Part of our legal problem today is that nobody understands what the *%^$( judges and lawyers are talking about. If you don't understand what your government is doing, then there is a problem, folks.
Yo! Alex Kozinski!

Posted by: TresureStater | October 28, 2005 12:58 AM

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