Bench Memos

Responsible Journalism

It appears that, so far, the press is by and large content to re-package

left-leaning groups’ talking points about Ms. Miers’s withdrawal as if they

actually had connections to, let alone represented, reality.

When a Democratic Senator or Ralph Neas shakes his or her head in sadness about

the mean, nasty right-wing take-down of Ms. Miers, or expresses hopes for a

unifying, “consensus nominee,” it needs to be made clear — not only in opinion

journalism, but in any news account by a responsible journalist — that (a) the

Miers’s nomination was *supported* by many on the “right” (Dobson, Hewitt,

etc.), just as it was opposed by many on the “right”; (b) that Ms. Miers’s had

been strongly criticized by the “left”, and certainly would have been savaged

by the “left” had many on the right not voiced their principled opposition

(does anyone really believe that — but for the conservative opposition –

Sens. Kennedy, Boxer, and Schumer would not have been hysterical in opposing a

pro-life, evangelical, Bush loyalist?); and (c) in today’s politics, there is

no such thing, unfortunately, as a “consensus” nominee. Any one who is smart,

experienced, on-record, and mainstream-conservative (e.g., Boggs, Alito,

Luttig, McConnell, E. Jones, O’Scannlain, Sutton, Pryor, etc.), will be opposed

by the Democratic Senators and the left-leaning interest groups, automatically

and ruthlessly. Remember, even John Roberts got 22 “no” votes.

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