Birdblog

A conservative news and views blog.

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Location: St. Louis, Missouri, United States

Friday, October 28, 2005

Where to Now?

Where do we go from here, now that Harriet Miers has withdrawn her name from consideration for the Supreme Court? How did things get so far that conservatives had to rebel against their own president? What can we expect from the future?

Let me begin by saying that I feel sorry for Miss Miers; she seems like a decent person and good lawyer, and she personally didn`t deserve the buzzsaw that hacked her to pieces. In some ways, it reminds me of what Dan Quayle went through when Bush 41 made him his running mate-except the attacks on Quayle came from his political enemies, while Harriet faced the hangman from her own side. Still, I know how I would feel if I were in her penny-loafers, and this would be a very painful, bitter experience. I doubt that she lobbied the President for this job; she was probably as surprised by this as we were. The ensuing uproar probably shocked her (I`m sure it shocked the President) and I suspect she withdrew when she realized she was in over her head-she was going to have to prove she belonged on the Court, and I think the magnitude of that job finally dawned on her. That has got to be painful.

This whole fiasco was the Presidents fault. HE refused to bring the Senate renegades (like John McCain) to heel, so he was at their mercy. (McCain-Feingold) HE allowed the Democrats in the Senate to run wild as part of his ``new tone``. (Kennedy writing the education bill, failing to respond to people like Durbin, Reid, etc.) HE campaigned for Arlen Specter against Toomey, and then was stuck with an undependable ally running the confirmations. HE ducked the fight over judicial filibusters by nominating ``stealthy John`` Roberts rather than allowing things to come to a head and breaking the Democrats back once and for all. Where could he go with this? I predicted this very thing; the President had backed himself into a corner, and was forced to nominate ``superstealth``, somebody nobody knew ANYTHING about. He had outsmarted himself by circumnavigating his enemies, and, like Cornwallis at Yorktown, found himself caught in his own trap.

I suspect he believed, and still does, that conservatives are always going to be on board with him in the end. Bush has been purging the conservative voices from his administration. Many of the old Reagan people complain that they no longer have access. This is part of the ``big tent`` philosophy of moderates; they believe that middle-America is moderate, and that they must govern from the center to win. This is at odds with our experiences for the last thirty years, but it is conventional wisdom inside the beltway, and our right-moderate President really DOES believe it! Perhaps now he will disabuse himself of that notion?

I doubt it. President Bush has a spine of iron when it comes to some things, and a head of granite with others. He seems more comfortable reaching out to his enemies than his friends, and he tends to plod along with the same methods. Sometimes this is good (such as the War),and sometimes (as in this matter) this is bad. I fear the President may not have learned his lesson, and I fear how he is going to deal with this.

I`m not at all confident that we are going to like his next appointment, and I really fear who he will give us if he gets a third opportunity. I may be misjudging the President, but I suspect he will send up someone more qualified, but not someone who is staunchly, ideologically conservative. I`m certain he is angry about the Miers affair, and, although he may not consciously plan to shaft us, will deny us our pick. I may be wrong, and I hope that I am, but I fear we are going to get another ``squishy`` on the Court.

Limbaugh and other conservative pundits have been trying to put a happy face on this affair, claiming that this has energized and invigorated the base. That may or may not be true, but this was a spontaneous outpouring of anger at a President and Party who have repeatedly asked us to swallow an excrement sandwich for the sake of political expediency, and we`re sick of it! This nomination has exposed cracks in the Republican coalition, cracks caused by the Country Club wing of the Republican Party trying to marginalize Conservative influence. This is not a conservative crackup, but a Republican one. We have thought that we ran the party, but have recently realized that things are otherwise. We have a nasty fight on our hands, a fight against the Rinos, the ``moderates``, the country-club business lobby in our party. Much like America before 911, we failed to recognize the ill-will borne us by our enemies-our party bretheren. We now realize that, while we fought our battles against the left, there were those who were benefitting from our efforts yet working against us. Certainly Jim Jeffords, Olympia Snow, John McCain, etc. have always despised us, but now we are learning that we can`t even trust members of the administration we fought so hard for.

Is this the end of Republican dominance? Not necessarily. The Rino wing is weaker than we are, and can be brought to heel if we assert ourselves. The President must be made to understand that we are not going to be treated as doormats! Our rebellion against the Miers nomination was a good start. If President Bush fails us again, we need to fight all the harder. That is democracy, that is what America is all about.

Ours is the legacy of Ronald Reagan, and we must honor that legacy. We cannot afford to allow ourselves to be pushed aside for political considerations, or in the interest of ``comity``. What we are doing, what we are fighting for, is very real and very serious. Our accomplishments will affect this land for a century or more. We cannot allow duplicity or knocking knees to undermine that!

Jay at Stop the ACLU has a trackback post with many interesting takes on this. Check it out!

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5 Comments:

Blogger Aussiegirl said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

11:57 AM  
Blogger Alnot said...

WND was whipsawing the Miers nomination and Jerome Corsi proved that he has integrity by pointing outGeorge W Bush's problems just as vigorously as he did with John F for Fraud Kerry. We need men of courage and integrity and George W just is not cutting it. The only comfort I have is that the majority of American saw through the Kerry fraud. I was and still am unhappy with how many did vote for Kerry. Then again I also knew just how unhappy many on the right were with George W before the election. Liberals will take advantage of any weakness and George W needs to get in the fight or go home.

1:21 PM  
Blogger Aussiegirl said...

Sorry about that earlier delete. My comment was so long I decided to make it a post on my own blog (hehe) and then I was on my way out the door. So-- here I am again -- great post, Tim!! You have been right all along. Harriet was never ready for prime time and this maneuver was just too clever by half, and he ended up paying for it big-time. But the conservative movement showed it could stick together AND stick up for its values and demand that the president live up to his promises. And I think Bush learned (I hope) a valuable lesson that he cannot simply think he can diss the conservatives on one issue after another and have them still blindly follow him and stand to attention every time he sneezes. There are principles. This was healthy for the party in the long run. If Bush nominates a solid conservative this time around the base will rally around him on the war and other issues that need to be confronted. His seeming desire to amputate his right wing as if it were an unnecessary appendage proved that he needs his base to win any kind of argument. When is he going to learn he is never going to appease the opposition? Oops - looks like I'm long again. Great Post!!

4:49 PM  
Blogger TJ Willms said...

"President Bush has a spine of iron when it comes to some things, and a head of granite with others."

Bullseye Tim!

Perhaps this was part of his "strategery" all along.It shows the same lack of in depth planning as went into the post war administration in "Iraqistan" once we had defeated the bulk of the military opposition.

Dubya is a good President but only to a point, he NEEDS the back-bone of the conservative wing of the Party wether HE knows it or not.
None of his sucesses would have been possible without them, and "poor" Harriet has proven that is still the case.

Great post!

6:15 AM  
Blogger Always On Watch said...

President Bush has a spine of iron when it comes to some things, and a head of granite with others.
The border issue as well as well as this misstep in nominating his personal attorney!

6:05 PM  

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