"To announce that there must be no criticism of the president, or that we are to stand by the president, right or wrong, is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable to the American public." Theodore Roosevelt
Conservatives are "pretty demoralized" over President Bush's surprise nomination of Harriet Miers to the U.S. Supreme Court, says Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol. Kristol noted, in an interview with Fox News, that with liberal Republican Sandra Day O'Connor leaving the court, Bush had a unique opportunity to put his conservative stamp on the Supreme Court. Instead, Kristol suggests Bush "flinched."
"It looks like he capitulated," a pessimistic Kristol said. The conservative commentator noted she has absolutely no judicial record, and he fears she will be "another O'Connor, another Souter." While O'Connor and current Associate Court Justice David Souter had served as judges, their judicial records were obscure at the time they were nominated for the Supreme Court.
Kristol sees Bush's pick of Miers as a slap in the face to conservative women jurists. "He has passed over conservative judges, including female judges, who have long and distinguished records on the federal and state supreme courts," Kristol said. "Maybe he is right. Maybe she will be a first-rate justice, but you don't know that. "This is not a Scalia, a Rehnquist or, for that matter, a John Roberts in terms of quality of pick," he added. "It's hard to interpret this as anything but flinching from a fight."
Kristol suggested the Bush administration may have feared a nomination fight with Democrats on judicial philosophy, which he said is a fight that most conservative Republicans would have welcomed. "It sends a bad signal," Kristol said. Conservative judges, particularly conservative women, that have been making the case for 5, 10 or 15 years, have been passed over in favor of someone with no record. That's hard to explain to conservatives."
Well there goes the faithful 40% that's been propping Dubya up for the last 5 years. Time to just sit back, and enjoy the show.