Thursday, October 27, 2005

Harriet Miers withdraws

The AP is reporting that Harriet Miers has withdrawn her name for consideration as a Supreme Court justice. President Bush is quoted as saying, "It is clear that senators would not be satisfied until they gained access to internal documents concerning advice provided during her tenure at the White House -- disclosures that would undermine a president's ability to receive candid counsel. Harriet Miers' decision demonstrates her deep respect for this essential aspect of the constitutional separation of powers -- and confirms my deep respect and admiration for her."

According to the report, Miers herself also blames the Senate's thirst for confidential records. "I have been informed repeatedly that in lieu of records, I would be expected to testify about my service in the White House to demonstrate my experience and judicial philosophy," she wrote.

"While I believe that my lengthy career provides sufficient evidence for consideration of my nomination, I am convinced the efforts to obtain Executive Branch materials and information will continue."

This is all a smokescreen, of course. The administration would be all too willing to go to war over executive privilege if it thought it could win. I think that calmer heads prevailed and, after consulting their Ouija boards and crystal balls, determined that they were ultimately destined to go down in flames, executive privilege or not.


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