A date has finally been set to begin the Harriet Miers confirmation proceedings.
But trouble is still a brewing.
Arlen Specter, a liberal Republican, referring to Harriet Miers, is quoted as saying that, "It is unfair to start the hearings before she's ready." Liberal senator Chuck Schumer says that Miers needs "some time to learn" about key constitutional cases. Why? Because Schumer didn't like the answers he got to cases he presented to Miers when he got meet her one-on-one the other day.
Chuck Schumer is a funny guy.
You see what makes Chuck so comical is that, amongst other things, here's what the Senator WON'T talk about: when it comes to George W. Bush making Supreme Court picks, the Senator's mind has long been made up. And it's a resounding "NO!". Chuck Schumer (who despite going on record expressing great admiration for John Roberts' judicial skills, yet still turned down his nomination) wouldn't vote "yes" to a Supreme Court nominee unless they absolutely hated the idea of prayer in schools, literally had an abortion and would go on record as having attended a gay wedding. Therein lies the Senator's litmus test. And last time I checked, that's illegal.
At least Specter has the excuse of being old, tired and literally sick. But who needs him anyway? Miers doesn't.
If Conservative Republicans would put their selfish pride aside and I don't know . . . TRUST the guy in charge, they'd see that a Miers confirmation is a step forward for the conservative movement. Conservatives wanted an obvious judicial conservative for their nominee. They didn't want to be asked, as they were with Judge Roberts, to support a nominee based on faith. They wanted another Robert Bork, a judge whose paper trail clearly identified him as a constitutionalist, yet he got rejected anyway.
We're supposed to learn from our mistakes, not repeat them.
So President Bush gave them Harriet Miers. She has never been a judge. Her paper trail is even thinner than Roberts'. Her judicial tendencies can be inferred, but they can't be proved. But what does that matter? Miers, has MORE experience at law than Clarence Thomas did before he got elected, so all the talk of "lack of experience" is really insignificant chatter covering for petty jealousy. Also, she has clearly shown where she stands on issues at the heart of conservatives. Sure, she hasn't said much so far in public, but legal speak says that she doesn't have to.
Like Roberts before her, Miers just needs to excel at the game of "getting in", and what that essentially means is that she has to learn the art of not saying much, without saying nothing. Convince at least 45 Republicans and 10 Democrats that she knows what she's talking about, get in tune with past major cases that shaped U.S. law, know the ins and outs of the Constitution and she's our next Associate Justice.
Then, she can make life easy for herself by just being like Thomas. Do like Thomas does in public: smile and say nothing. And, like Thomas does with Antonin Scalia, she can just lean over and copy another justices' notes. And, just like Thomas, in 10 years Conservatives will have the same adoration for Harriet as they do now for Thomas. And they'll throw her plenty of accolades. And call her "brilliant". Just like Thomas.
Can it be that it's all so simple?
For Miers sake and the President's, it'd better be.