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Miers Withdraws

October 27th, 2005

My brother just called and alerted me to the breaking story: Miers is no longer a nominee. The White House is of course trying to put the best face on it: Miers asked Bush to withdraw her nomination, and the White House “reluctantly” agreed. I’m sure they were reluctant, but I doubt that’s how it went down. Look at Bush’s explanation: that Miers would never pass unless Senator saw the documentation on her. Which is BS: they didn’t release the info on Roberts, and it wasn’t a problem with them. If the Republican senators wanted to see the documentation, the White House could find a way to give them the info they wanted to see, under the table. It’s not Miers begging, it’s not resigning to paperwork problems. My brother pointed out something I probably wouldn’t have thought of: that this is the White House deciding to take all their hits at one time, with the indictments against Rove and Libby likely coming out either later today or tomorrow. Instead of this happening over a longer time, say one huge story a week over two weeks, instead two big stories coming out at almost the same time, stepping on each other and fighting for air time.

Now the question is, how will Bush handle the next step? Probably they’ll wait for the indictments to come out, and soon after that, release Bush’s new nominee to try to sap the strength of the indictment story. But who will he choose? Will he go for a hardcore conservative (like Owen or Brown) to please his base, possibly incurring a serious Democratic challenge? Or will he try to find someone who is a more moderate conservative to avoid a bitter fight? Either way, he’ll have to choose someone with far better credentials than Miers. And I’m guessing he’ll go with a hardcore nominee; it’s a better bet that the Democrats won’t go so far as a filibuster, but one hopes that this will be the rallying cry the Dems finally find their cajones with, and go for broke.

So, what if the GOP goes with the nuclear option? I would think, what difference would it make? If the Dems always back down at that threat, then what voice do they have anyway? At least if the GOP goes nuclear and kills the filibuster, it can be used by the Dems in 2006 to demonstrate how the GOP has become drunk with power, and has demolished a much-loved icon of individualism and small-guy power that is the filibuster. It’s Mr. Smith Goes to Washington! The GOP has killed Mr. Smith! They’re the Taylor machine, knocking over our small-town wagons trying to get the truth out the the public! As I see it, if the Dems don’t push it now, they’ll never get anything out of it anyway. And who knows, maybe the impossible will happen and the Dems will succeed in knocking out a hardcore candidate without the GOP going nuclear. I think the only way the Dems can lose is by caving in and not making the necessary challenge.

I’ve got an eye on CNN, and so far, they’re only talking to Republicans and getting their spin–haven’t heard them interview a Democrat yet. Surprise, surprise.

Update: after more than an hour of only Republicans commenting, Wolf Blitzer finally said he’d get to the view from “liberals”–and then spent five minutes discussing the Republicans’ point of view and their actions. Eventually, they got to a live statement by Chuck Schumer–which they cut off after less than a minute so they could take a call from Robert Bork. Yeah, this is balanced, all right. Ten minutes later: Ann Coulter is on the phone. This is a joke.

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  1. Cojonudo
    October 31st, 2005 at 01:50 | #1

    find their cajones with

    It’s “cojones.” “Cajones” means drawers, as of a desk. To native Spanish speakers, probably the majority of those who understand the term, “cojones” is rather offensive. Madeleine Albright lost the respect of several Spanish American diplomats when she used the term in their presence.

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