Monday, October 17, 2005

Today’s Pitts

Leonard Pitts in the Miami Herald:

In a way, you can’t blame the Bush administration for turning the conversation to Harriet Miers’ religion. What else are they going to talk about? Her qualifications?

Those, as we have learned in the two weeks-and-counting since President Bush nominated her to the Supreme Court, are a trifle thin. The woman who would become one of the nine most important judges in the land has never been a judge before. Worse, she lacks significant experience in constitutional law. But on the plus side, she is — big surprise here — Bush’s longtime lawyer and friend.

Miers has built a successful career, primarily in corporate law, that has left little paper trail. One might be forgiven for thinking she was meant as a stealth nominee, the idea being that a woman who had never taken a publicly-recorded stand offered detractors a smaller target.

It’s not turning out that way.


And beg pardon, but wasn’t it three months ago that a Democratic senator asked nominee John Roberts a perfectly legitimate question (Have you thought about how you would handle conflicts between your Catholic faith and the law?) only to have conservatives get their knickers in a knot over a supposedly inappropriate injection of religion into the confirmation process? So suddenly it’s OK to talk religion?

The hypocrisy is suffocating. It is not, sad to say, surprising.

For four years plus, this administration has brazenly flouted the law, hired cronies, praised incompetence, pretended up was down and black, white, then dared us to believe the evidence of our lying eyes. This is the same old, same old.

Still, it’s a rare and satisfying treat to see that behavior backfire so loudly and so publicly.

Harriet Miers’ bid for the high court has exploded like a novelty store cigar. A stealth nominee, she is not.