Harriet Miers, we hardly knew you. That is the subject of this evening's "Talking Points Memo."
Well, I owe Bill Kristol a dinner. Last week, I bet him that Harriet Miers (search) would be confirmed. And today, she was thrown overboard by the Bush administration.
The official word was that she didn't want to talk about her counsel to the president so she withdrew, what everybody knew the counsel thing would come up after, after all, that's her big qualification. She advises President Bush on the law.
Also, the president has a legal right to keep that counsel private, so the excuse is bogus.
What really happened is that Ms. Miers had become a big problem. And unless she knocked their lights out in the Senate hearing, she would be voted down.
Right now, the Bush administration has so many problems, it didn't need that one. And the presidency is an opportunity to energize his base. So I predict he will now nominate a high-profile conservative judge to jazz up the right.
Mr. Bush needs conservative support to fight off the relentless attacks on his administration. So the Miers withdrawal gets rid of a problem, and gives Bush some room to counterattack.
Now I get a real kick out of Senator Kennedy saying today that the Republicans were mean to Harriet Miers, and had "a litmus test for a Supreme Court (search) judge." This is extra special, as Kennedy is the crown prince of litmus tests. If you don't support unfettered abortion, you don't get his vote.
Senator Kennedy voted against John Roberts (search), who is obviously very qualified for the court, because Roberts flunked Kennedy's abortion litmus test. You got to love Senator Kennedy. He does have brass, doesn't he?
Summing up, Harriet Miers got a bad deal. She should have been given a chance to speak. Politics got her, not nice, not good for the country. And that's "The Memo."
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
In a desperate attempt to stay in the spotlight, Cindy Sheehan (search) was arrested again last night. Once again Sheehan illegally protested outside the White House, demanding all U.S. troops leave Iraq right this minute. She was fined $75, got herself some publicity and at this point, we will leave Ms. Sheehan forever unless she marries Michael Moore (search) or something, because her story is not advancing.
Good-bye, Cindy. Sorry you wouldn't chat with me. Then again, that might have been ridiculous.