Bench Memos

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Another Routine New York Times Distortion


Yesterday’s New York Times article on the White House’s supposed focus on diversity in selecting the next nominee includes this passage (with italics added):

“Miguel A. Estrada, a partner at the law firm of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in Washington who has also been mentioned by Republicans as a potential nominee, was said by the strategists not to be interested in the position. Mr. Estrada, an assistant solicitor general in the administration of the first President Bush and the beginning of the Clinton administration, was nominated by the current President Bush to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, but Democrats filibustered him and he withdrew his nomination.”

The actual facts are that Estrada served as an assistant solicitor general for less than four months at the close of the Bush 41 administration and for the first 5-1/2 years of the Clinton administration. I’ll acknowledge that the correction is trivial (especially because the article’s statement of Estrada’s lack of interest in being nominated is accurate), but it provides an illustration of how the liberal media, either consciously or sloppily, routinely slant even elementary facts to fit the Left’s story line.

With Estrada’s previous nomination, the Left’s unjustified story line was that there was some compelling need to intrude on executive-branch privilege and obtain Estrada’s confidential legal memos. The objection of all previous living Solicitors General to this demand should have sufficed but didn’t. Exposing the fact that about 95% of the time Estrada was advising Democrats (who amply testified to his merits) would have highlighted how ridiculous the posturing of Senate Democrats was.


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