The Coming Storm

Skepticism Abounds Over Miers Credentials

Remind me to miss the Harriett Meirs confirmation hearings next month. Quite frankly, it isn't going to be pretty.

Already amnesia is setting in with Republicans's over the applying of the 'Ginsberg Rule' as they are stating they are going to ask questions they expect her to

"Will you overturn Roe V. Wade?" and "Will you overturn Roe V. Wade!?!?"

Well, maybe not that direct, but perhaps as direct as it will be. Want a hint?

"Miers' nomination has caused division among conservatives, and a leader of the right said he will not be satisfied until it is clear whether Miers, a longtime Bush confidante who has never been a judge, would overturn the 1973 landmark abortion ruling.

"You can be an evangelical and you can be self-described pro-life. But it doesn't tell us what she will do about a decision like Roe that has been set in stone now for over 30 years. And that's the rub," said Gary Bauer, president of American Values."

Specter, noting that a justice has lifetime tenure, said, "If there are back room assurances and if there are back room deals and if there is something which bears upon a precondition as to how a nominee is going to vote, I think that's a matter that ought to be known."

Specter and the committee's top Democrat, Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy, are considering having Focus on the Family founder James Dobson testify at Miers' confirmation hearings. Dobson has said he is confident Miers opposes abortion, based on private assurances from the White House.

Disputing that, Leahy said Miers assured him that she had not made any promises on how she would vote on Roe.

"If assurances were given of how any nominee — whether this nominee or anybody else — and somebody gives assurances how they're going to vote in an upcoming case, I would vote against that person," said Leahy, who appeared with Specter on ABC's "This Week."

In recent days, many conservatives have expressed outrage that Bush did not choose a nominee with a proven judicial track record and it was risky putting Miers on the court because she was a blank slate on issues such as abortion and the death penalty. Some activists have said she should withdraw her nomination.

Bauer suggested that conservatives will not support Miers unless they have assurances that she would oppose Roe."

Make no mistake, this is all about abortion and about nothing else. As an irate conservative emailer said, "If we'd had picked Janice Brown or one of the other 'qualified' candidates, Roe V. Wade would be dead meat!"


Again, it's about abortion and that's exactly what the hearings will show.

But something else will happen as well. Republican's looking like Democrats, asking for documents, emails. Demanding answers, arguing, berating, grandstanding, all which will happen against a five-foot-two, 61 year-old Christian lady.

Miers will do fine I believe - she's a bull dog. I'm in the camp that believes that once hearings begin at least some will calm down. But there will still be others who will not.

The American public being fresh off the Katrina/Rita "sympathy train", there is the possibility that they may not be warming to a public whipping of Miers. If it get's rough with Spector playing prosecutor and grilling her - while some of her conservative opponents will welcome the scrutiny - the fact is that it's simply not going to go over well with the public at large. Mark my words - it won't.

It doesn't matter if they understand the importance (pro or con), of the questioning.

In this world, sadly, "Perception is Reality" and like it or not it's not going to play well in Kansas if looks like Republicans are getting 'ugly' and ganging up on her. Right now the Party simply cannot take a chance on that type of perception occurring.

Another thing which every conservative I have read or talked to so far is missing is that when Judge Roberts was selected and up for confirmation, we preached the Ginsberg Rule to the left. Now that someone who has been picked that dissapoints some of us, we're tossing the rule "Because we have to know!" So that again, we are going to look a lot like the left on this one.

Am I the only one who is seeing hypocrisy here? Can we be so dumb not to realize the next time a conservative is picked for the SCOTUS or any court the "GR" will simply not suffice?

Which brings me to this point. Everybody is talking about "bringing the court back to the right" and to stop judicial activism. But what this has taught me is that it wasn't activism that bothered us, just so long as it was from the right.

UPDATE: Well! Scalia comes out in support, while Polipundit withdrawls it. Tell me this isn't going to be a Storm.

h/t on the Scalia tip to California Conservative. AJ at the Strata-Sphere for some good insights.

Further tracks: Polipundit

UPDATE II: Want to see more of the implosion of the party? See this "poll" RightWing News is running. Oh yeah, we're done.