Laura Bush, wife of the President, made it clear that she wanted to see a woman appointed to the Supreme Court by her husband. She said so publicly and forcefully, but the matter seemed to be covered only in passing by the press. But, apparently, the President took notice and felt it is important to honor the wishes of his wife.
The question became which woman should the President appoint to the Supreme Court? Should the woman be a judge already with the appropriate partisan/political credentials, thus advancing the Bush agenda, and more importantly, the right wing conservative agenda? That would be a good move from a political perspective, but was not congruent with the Bush program of appointees, which emphasizes cronyism, patronage, and rewards to insiders for past service.
No, Bush had to appoint a woman who happened to be a crony and an attorney. He had to appoint a woman who he knew well personally and yet who he had firm confidence would advance his agenda for years after he left office. And, it wouldn’t hurt to appoint a personal friend to the Supreme Court, perhaps a personal attorney of his own to shepherd any litigation against him to his advantage if he were prosecuted after leaving office, or perhaps even removed from office through prosecution or impeachment actions.
Thus, Harriet Miers became the one and only possible appointee for the Supreme Court. She is a woman, and thus pleases Laura. She is a crony and a personal attorney with intense loyalty to Bush himself. She has no track record of judicial writings on which to disqualify her. She has had plenty of face time with the President to build his confidence in her personal beliefs without any public portrayal of those personal beliefs. To the Bush Brain (K. Rove)as well as the Bush mind, this woman is the perfect choice for Supreme Court Justice.
The big problem in all of this is that what qualifies a woman for the Supreme Court from the Bush perspective is not necessarily what qualifies a woman for the Supreme Court from the perspective of virtually all other Americans. Americans are willing to tolerate some political considerations in these appointments, but the Miers nomination is pure politics, and nothing more and nothing less. Bush insulted the American people by declaring the Miers was the best qualified person for the position, and he and Miers may very well pay for their insult with their own embarrassment. It may prove that neither George, nor Laura, nor Harriet will be happy with how this all turns out.