PERSON OF THE WEEK - Oct 24-28, 2005
I faced a difficult choice this week: should I give the title of Person of the Week to a figure in the Plame name blame game (Otherwise known as the CIA leak investigaiton) or Harriet Miers? In the end I decided that Miers' withdrawl trumped the leak investigation. Why? Because the leak investigation ended with a thud rather than a bang. The only indictments handed down were weak and involved only the supposed cover-up of an action that was not a a crime. Scooter Libby didn't really do anything to affect the news, and Patrick Fitzgerald didn't issue a shocking enough indictiment to qualify as Person of the Week.
Well, enough about the people that DIDN'T win, let's talk about Harriet Miers. I can't say that her withdrawl was totally unexpected, but it still hit Washington like a ton of bricks. With Miers off the table, the President must go back to square one and pick a new nominee using different criteria than he did for the Miers and Roberts nominations. Instead of trying to win over the Democrats with a palatable nominee, he must now win back the support of his own party by picking a solid, hard-core judicial conservative.
Another reason the Miers' withdrawl was so important is that it means that Sandra Day O'Connor will remain on the court for several landmark cases on the docket for this autumn, possibly including a major abortion-related case. So, instaed of having a conservative majority, we will still have a divided court with a pro-Roe swing voter. By withdrawing her nomination, Harriet Miers may have changed the course of judicial history concerning abortion.
Lastly, Miers earned "Person of the Week" due to her participation in another process, the selection of a new Supreme Court justice. As White House Counsel , Miers plays a MAJOR role in vetting potential nominees and advising the President on who to choose. While she is no longer the nominee, she is still a very powerful force in process of replacing Justice O'Connor.
So, for shaking up the Supreme court nomination process, Harriet Miers is ConservaGlobe's first ever two-time Person of the Week.
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