Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Maybe he skipped class the day that vetting was discussed

By Aussiegirl

John Fund describes the failed vetting process which led to the Miers nomination. This is not going away, and opposition is growing by the day, including in her home state of Texas, where prominent GOP donors are meeting to discuss spending large sums to run ads calling for Ms. Miers to withdraw. The only conservative legal foundation in Texas has also failed to endorse her.

OpinionJournal - John Fund on the Trail

President Bush has told friends that he learned how to manage from three places: Harvard Business School, his experiences working in the Texas oilfields and with baseball teams, and from watching his father. In all three places he learned valuable skills: flexibility, the importance of team effort, discretion, how to delegate. The one thing he apparently didn't learn was that you never short-circuit the standard vetting process when filling an important job, even when doing so has worked out in the past.
The vetting of Harriet Miers leaves questions that demand answers, not more spin or allegations that critics are "sexist" or "elitist." It was so botched and riddled with conflicts of interest that it demands at a minimum an internal White House investigation to ensure it won't happen again.

Not only did the vetting fail to anticipate skepticism about her lack of experience in constitutional law or the firestorm of criticism from conservatives, but it left the White House scrambling to provide reporters with even the most basic information about the closed-mouthed nominee. Almost every news story seemed to catch the White House off guard and unprepared.

The skepticism is not abating. Back home, the Liberty Legal Institute, the only conservative legal foundation in Texas, has declined to endorse her. Several large GOP donors in Texas have met to discuss spending large sums to run ads calling on Ms. Miers to withdraw. "They include both male and female friends of hers who don't think the confirmation process will be good for her or the country," one told me. "They're not sexists, they're realists." This even though the White House has ominously put out the word in Texas: "If you oppose this nomination, you oppose the president." Everyone knows what the political ramifications of that can mean in the world of George W. Bush and Karl Rove.


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