Filling Another Slot On The Supreme Court
Because of all the focus on hurricane Katrina, there hasn’t been a lot of talk about Bush’s next appointment to the Supreme Court.
The truth is that things haven’t changed all that much since Bush selected Roberts.
There are still 55 Republican Senators and it’s likely that the GOP can still probably raise 50 votes for the nuclear option if need be. Moreover, as we’ve seen with Roberts, the public expects the Democrats to raise hell no matter who Bush’s nominee is, so Bush isn’t going to be hurt by any Democratic squawking.
The only real difference might be that since Bush’s approval rating is lower than when Roberts was selected, he may be significantly less likely to make a selection that will gravely offend his strongest supporters. Were he to pick someone like Alberto Gonzales for instance, it could cause so furor among the base that you could see Bush’s already low approval rating plummet into the thirties.
As to whom Bush might pick, there are a lot of great candidates out there whom conservatives would be happy with including Sam “Scalito” Alito, Janice Rogers Brown, John Cornyn, Miguel Estrada, Emilio Garza, Edith Jones, Michael Luttig, Mel Martinez, Michael McConnell, Ted Olson, Priscilla Owen, & William Pryor.
Candidates Republicans should be wary of because of their shaky conservative credentials include Edith Brown Clement, Harriet Miers, Larry Thompson, J. Harvie Wilkinson, and of course Alberto Gonzales.
Given that Bush just went through the selection process with Roberts, he has probably already honed it down to 2-3 picks in his mind — if he hasn’t already made his selection.
Personally, I’m a big Miguel Estrada fan. But, if Bush thinks he’s too young and inexperienced, Janice Rogers Brown, Michael Luttig, & Priscilla Owen would all be absolutely fantastic selections. Alito, Garza, and Jones would be right behind them.
In any case, as long as the President chooses a solid originalist for the court, conservatives should be thrilled.