Conservatives Ask President Bush to Withdraw Harriet Miers Pick

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 14, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Conservatives Ask President Bush to Withdraw Harriet Miers Pick Email this article
Printer friendly page

by Steven Ertelt Editor
October 14, 2005

Washington, DC ( — Some conservative political advocates are calling on President Bush to withdraw the nomination of Harriet Miers for the Supreme Court. They say Miers is not as qualified as other potential nominees and that the defense of her nomination by friends and the president make it appear as if she was picked because of her evangelical Christian views.

Manuel Miranda, chairman of the Third Branch Conference, a conservative group that has pushed for confirmation of John Roberts and Bush’s past appeals court picks, says Bush should take the nomination off the table.

"The calls to withdraw are serious, and they’re going to increase," he told the San Francisco Chronicle. "The more that we heard from the nomination’s defenders, the more people became convinced that there was no substance in the nomination and that her friends were her worst enemies."

In addition, charges that President Bush picked Miers simply because of their long-standing working relationship are adding to the pressure the president is facing.

White House spokesman Scott McClellan told reporters that Bush will not withdraw Miers.

"No one that knows her would make such a suggestion," McClellan said. "And no one that knows her record and her qualifications would make such a suggestion."

Some pro-life groups like National Right to Life, Christian Coalition have backed Miers as has Focus on the Family founder and president Dr. James Dobson. However, other groups are concerned that President Bush is citing Miers’ religion as a reason for picking her.

"We are the last people on Earth to object to the news that she is a committed Christian," Family Research Council president Tony Perkins said in a statement. "By the same token, this fact is not grounds for certifying her to us or to the public. … Inferences drawn from an individual’s religious affiliation have no place in decisions to nominate or confirm a judicial appointee."

Jan LaRue, chief counsel of Concerned Women for America, agreed and said, "We find it patronizing and hypocritical to focus on her faith in order to gain support for Miss Miers."

Miranda predicted that calls for Miers to be withdrawn may increase when members of the Senate come back to Washington next week from their recess.

By then, Republicans "will have gauged the feeling out in their constituencies, and at that point they will be able to determine whether the White House is delusional or not," Miranda explained.

Senate Democrats told the Chronicle they’re waiting to see what develops.