The White House has taken a hard stand against the Senate today by refusing to release Harriet Miers’s the name, Bush’s nominee to The Supreme Court, or any documents she worked on while at the White House to the Senate Judiciary Committee. This refusal to give even the name of his nominee to the Senate could spell trouble for Miers’s chances at being confirmed as even Senate Republicans want to know who Bush’s nominee is.
The President announced his decision today in the Rose garden and gave reporters information about his nominee’s background.
“My nominee is a person of unlimited loyalty and courage, and is trail blazer in the legal community.” Said the President. “I know this person’s heart and know they will make one heck of a judge. This person is a lawyer. And is an evangelical Christian, just the way I like’em. I know you are going to like them as soon as they are confirmed and I tell you who it is.”
The President has garnered lots of support for his nominee from Christian groups, but that support has not translated into support on capitol hill.
“I’m just not going to vote for a nominee without knowing their name. I don’t care what the President sees in that person’s heart” said Republican leader of the Judiciary Committee, Arlen Specter.
“This is highly unusual for a President to make a nomination to the Supreme Court and not release the person’s name.” Says veteran Washington hand David Gergon. “I can understand not releasing some papers that might violate executive privilege, but not releasing the name of the nominee is really breaking new ground. I’ve been trying to think of another occasion were a President made a ‘blind’ nomination, and I just can’t think of one. This is a major extension of the President’s powers. It will be very interesting to see if he gets away with it.”
“I’m not surprised.” Says Political insider Andrew Sullivan. “This administration has always played things close to the vest and this is a logical extension of that philosophy. They figure that by not telling the Senate that Miers is the nominee she will have a better chance of being confirmed. It’s the ultimate stealth play. I mean, who can say anything bad about the nominee if they don’t know who she is.”