Monday, October 24, 2005

Bush Won't Release All Miers Records

President Bush said Monday that he will not release any records of his conversations with Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers that could threaten the confidentiality of the advice that presidents get from their lawyers...."People can learn about Harriet Miers through hearings, but we are not going to destroy this business about people being able to walk into the Oval Office to say, Mr. President, this is my advice," Bush said after a meeting with his Cabinet.
Link to AP article

Pat: I believe you can add "releasing information that would allow the Senate to determine the qualifications of a Supreme Court nominee" to a list of the things 'President' Bush is utterly unable to do.

Tim: As much as I dislike Miers and pray every day that her name be withdrawn, confidentiality is important to the Presidency. You can't very well operate a White House with everyone looking at what goes on. Lawyer-client confidentiality holds.

Pat: And if we were talking about Bush's private life, I'd agree. But we're not; we're talking about two issues here. First is transparency in government. It's not only insulting to the public to tell them that they can't have a clue about how the government works, it's reminiscent of totalitarianism. But more importantly is the issue of the nominee herself. If all the work a nominee has done is unable to be released to the public (or even the Senate), then the public and Senate have no means of determining the qualifications of the nominee. He might as well outright refuse to release her name.

Tim: I admit that Miers is a terrible nominee and should be withdrawn. I agree that he should have picked a nominee whose records are releasable. But they can't release her records, and so we can just hope that the Senate will not merely take the President's word that Miers is qualified, but base the vote for confirmation on only what they have seen.

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