Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Federalist Paper #76

Harriet Miers may be a lovely lady, she may ultimately satisfy partisans down the road if she is confirmed, except, she shouldn't be. Some have complained that she is Souter in a dress. Bush cooly responds that she is a "Pit Bull in six inch heels." She might be the best damned lawyer in whatever her niche in private sector law was. Though, from the brief histories of her career distilled in the newsmedia, it appears that she has largely functioned as a very capable administrator. I suspect that she would be a great CEO of a Fortune 500 firm(My friends on the left tell me Halliburton is a great firm), or even possibly a good jurist provided she had the opportunity to foment a judicial philosophy on the district or appellate level. Bush has opted for loyalty, and loyalty so extremely exercised converges on cronyism. Her primary qualifications are: 1. She's a She; 2. She's Bush's friend. Harriet Miers is one of the most thinly qualified nominees and should be voted down pursuant to Federalist Paper #76:

"To what purpose then require the co-operation of the Senate? I answer, that the necessity of their concurrence would have a powerful, though, in general, a silent operation. It would be an excellent check upon a spirit of favoritism in the President, and would tend greatly to prevent the appointment of unfit characters from State prejudice, from family connection, from personal attachment, or from a view to popularity. In addition to this, it would be an efficacious source of stability in the administration.

It will readily be comprehended, that a man who had himself the sole disposition of offices, would be governed much more by his private inclinations and interests, than when he was bound to submit the propriety of his choice to the discussion and determination of a different and independent body, and that body an entier branch of the legislature. The possibility of rejection would be a strong motive to care in proposing. The danger to his own reputation, and, in the case of an elective magistrate, to his political existence, from betraying a spirit of favoritism, or an unbecoming pursuit of popularity, to the observation of a body whose opinion would have great weight in forming that of the public, could not fail to operate as a barrier to the one and to the other. He would be both ashamed and afraid to bring forward, for the most distinguished or lucrative stations, candidates who had no other merit than that of coming from the same State to which he particularly belonged, or of being in some way or other personally allied to him, or of possessing the necessary insignificance and pliancy to render them the obsequious instruments of his pleasure."

4 comments:

PiedPiper said...

Sheesh, people start throwing around Billy Bennett's name and Xtra springs to life! Welcome back to the fold.

Ilya said...

Finally, the Founders can speak for themselves after all!

Ilya said...

...but you're a few papers off Xtra. Try #78, it's most relevant .

xtrachromosomeconservative said...

#78 isn't really the one, though, it is important in understanding the role of the judiciary but really with regards to harriet miers vis-a-vis advice and consent I was primarily concerned with this passage:
"It would be an excellent check upon a spirit of favoritism in the President, and would tend greatly to prevent the appointment of unfit characters from State prejudice, from family connection, from personal attachment, or from a view to popularity."
Simply, Hamilton sets forth criteria for rejecting a nominee, and on each one of these criteria, Harriet Miers comes up. Her nomination is the sum of tokenism and cronyism, and it is clear that Hamilton wrote #76 with such a nomination in mind.