No, this is not a joke. As so many of us had hoped, Harriet Ellan Miers, Bitch-Goddess of La Casa Blanca, has just withdrawn as a nominee to be an Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court. O happy day!
Miers's withdrawal letter -- it looks like Harriet Miers lacks personalized stationery -- can be accessed here (pdf). President Bush's statement, in which he explains that he "reluctantly accepted" Miers's resignation, is available here.
Earlier this week, Article III Groupie expressed doubt that Harriet E. Miers would withdraw as President Bush's SCOTUS nominee. But A3G's assessment was made before the latest Harriet Miers disasters, including the news that Miers delivered speeches in the 1990s in which she extolled the virtue of "self-determination" with respect to abortion and school prayer, questioned the utility and efficacy of "legislating religion or morality," and cited with approval such liberal feminist icons as Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and, believe it or not, Barbra Streisand. At any rate, this is one situation in which A3G is happy to be wrong.
A3G is pleased as punch about Harriet Miers's withdrawal, not just as a solid conservative and a concerned citizen, but as a blogger. As you could probably tell from how her Miers-related blogging slowed to a trickle, A3G was sick and tired of whacking at the Harriet Miers pinata. After an initial spate of fun and mocking posts, blogging about HEM got very tired, very quickly. Now A3G can take all of those Harriet Miers-related emails from her readers -- for which she thanks you very much, by the way -- and banish them to the archives of her Gmail account.
A few questions that immediately spring to A3G's mind:
1. Will Harriet Miers continue to serve as White House Counsel, and will she be involved in the selection of the next nominee? (The concluding sentence of her withdrawal letter reads, "I am most grateful for the opportunity to have served your Administration and this country." This could be read as suggesting Miers's imminent departure from White House service.)
2. Who will the next nominee be, and does that nominee have to be a woman?
3. How quickly will the White House name the next nominee?
4. How upset is Justice Sandra Day O'Connor right now? (A3G feels badly for SOC, who wants and needs to spend more time with her ailing husband, but who has committed to remain on the Court until the confirmation of her successor.)
5. Finally, why did Judge J. Michael Luttig bring donuts and fresh apple cider into chambers this morning?
Dear friends, these are interesting and exciting times for federal judicial groupies. Stay tuned!