Tuesday :: Jul 19, 2005

To Get Attention Off Of Plame, Bush Accelerates Supreme Court Pick To Tonight


by Steve

So, with things not going well for the White House in its efforts to manage the drip-drip-drip damage from the Plame outing, something needed to be done to redirect attention away from the White House’s role in a national security breach towards something else. And after telling reporters late last week that his Supreme Court choice would be named sometime between July 26th and July 28th to allow the Senate a minimal amount of time as possible to go through the candidate’s background in advance of the court’s opening session in the first week of October, the White House has decided to push up Bush’s announcement of his Supreme Court selection to tonight to take attention away from the Plame outing.

Despite claims that this White House doesn’t read polls, advance speculation is that Bush will name a woman, Edith Clement, of the 5th Circuit tonight. His desire to please the public and his wife by choosing a woman will not be so suicidal as to see him pick someone like Priscilla Owen or Janice Rogers Brown, who were let through last month as part of the deal for appeals court nominees and whose approval for those posts means nothing when we are talking about the highest court in the land. In fact, if Bush did pick one of these two loons tonight, it would only serve to kneecap the Gang of 14, who would then see that Bush took that deal and wiped his butt on it to use it for a totally unworthy Supreme Court pick.

Correction: My initial post did in fact mix up Edith Jones and Edith Clement; Jones is an avowed strict constructionist and opponent of Roe V. Wade. The fact that the GOP strategists are talking up Clement instead of Jones would indicate that Bush is headed in a somewhat more moderate direction in getting a conservative than picking someone like Jones, Owen, or Rogers Brown. And that may be indicative of what the White House thinks about their political capital right about now, if in fact he goes with Clement instead of one of the others.

So, let’s see who the pick is, and then let the games begin.

By the way, where is that Bolton recess appointment? And what happens to the remaining appeals court nominees from that group of seven if Bush goes with a far right pick tonight?

Update: There is one group that will love a Clement pick, and that is Big Business. Clement has said in the past that she respects Supreme Court precedent when it comes to cases involving privacy, including Roe. But that was when she was going for an appeals court slot; whether she would feel the same way when she gets a chance at making law herself at the highest court in the land is something else again. She could be a good stealth candidate, full of rulings that don't lend themselves to discerning a consistent judicial philosophy, but that also means that she is not an obvious crowd-pleaser for the James Dobson crowd, which may feel once again that they got screwed out of a true believer (like Edith Jones) and instead got passed over to please Wall Street.

And if Bush does pick a woman but passes on a Hispanic, how will that go down?

Steve :: 12:15 PM :: Comments (20) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!