Just in case you have not yet seen this (I think you would have to be living in a cave to not have), Bush has nominated his White House Counsel to take over the seat that O'Connor is vacating. There is little paper trail on her, so I will withhold my approval/disapproval of the pick, but looking over her qualifications, she appears to well qualified for the position.
Special interest groups on both the right and left have already started lining up against her. The conservative "Public Advocate" group has come out against her since she is not verifiably anti-choice. Of course, the same group pulled its support for Roberts because he doesn't hate gays. So much for the name "Public Advocate." Irony is not just a river in Egypt.
Bush Names Harriet Miers to Supreme Court
White House Counsel Would Replace Retiring Sandra Day O'Connor
By Fred Barbash, Peter Baker and Michael Fletcher
Washington Post Staff Writers
Monday, October 3, 2005; 10:18 AM
President Bush named White House Counsel Harriet Miers, 60, to be associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court today.
Miers, who was Bush's personal attorney in Texas, was the first woman elected president of the Texas Bar Association and was a partner at the Texas law firm of Locke Liddell & Sapp before coming to Washington to work in the Bush administration.
If confirmed, she would be a rare appointee with no experience as a judge at any level. Among the non-judges appointed in modern history are the late William H. Rehnquist, who was a top Justice Department official in the Nixon administration, and Abe Fortas, an influential Washington attorney and close adviser to Lyndon B. Johnson, who nominated him to the high court in 1965.
Bush portrayed her as a "pioneer" in the legal profession who broke down gender barriers in the law. She would succeed Sandra Day O'Connor, the first woman on the Supreme Court, who is retiring.
"Harriet's greatest inspiration was her mother, who taught her the difference between right and wrong and instilled in Harriet the conviction that she could do anything she set her mind to," said Bush.
"Inspired by the confidence, Harriet became a pioneer in the field of law, breaking down barriers to women that remain even after a generation -- remain a generation after President Reagan appointed Justice O'Connor to the Supreme Court."
Miers was active in a 1992 battle in the American Bar Association, arguing vehemently but unsuccessfully against a resolution supportive of abortion rights. New reports at the time did not quote her on the merits of Roe v. Wade , the 1973 decision legalizing abortion, but rather on what she considered the inappropriateness of the ABA taking a position.
Miers does have some political experience. In 1989, she was elected to a two-year term as an at-large candidate on the Dallas City Council. She chose not to run for reelection when her term expired.
Miers served as general counsel for the transition team of Governor-elect Bush in 1994, according to a White House biography of Miers released this morning.
"She is single and very close to her family: Two brothers and her mother live in Dallas and a third brother lives in Houston," said the White House biography.
Her low-key but high-precision style has been particularly valued in a White House where discipline in publicly articulating policy and loyalty to the president are highly valued.