First we learn that Harriet Miers has questionable taste in Supreme Court justices. Now we learn, in this New York Times article by Sheryl Gay Stolberg, that Harriet Miers has questionable taste in books:
On Friday, [former Senator Dan] Coats escorted Ms. Miers to a meeting with Senator Conrad Burns, Republican of Montana, who said he asked Ms. Miers what authors she liked to read and what she did to relax.
He said Ms. Miers replied that she did not do much relaxing but that she liked John Grisham's legal thrillers.
Oy vey! If Harriet Miers was going to name an author of legal thrillers, couldn't she at least have gone with the far more respectable Scott Turow? Article III Groupie is reaching the point of "vicarious embarrassment" when it comes to Harriet Miers: her responses to senatorial questions are so bad that A3G gets red-faced just from reading about them....*
Several commentators have joked that Harriet Miers will need all the help she can get in preparing for her upcoming Senate Judiciary Committee hearings. Between now and the hearings, she will be focused on beefing up her substantive legal knowledge. But if Harriet Miers has any time to spare, she should ask that brilliant polymath, Judge Richard Posner, to serve as her Henry Higgins, by sharing with her his encyclopedic knowledge of literature and the arts. And the #1 Superhottie of the Federal Judiciary, Judge Alex Kozinski, could provide her with tutorials in film (and maybe take her snowboarding, too).
Harriet Miers has already had a stylistic makeover, which has been well-received; now all she needs is a cultural one. Alas, the latter is much harder to pull off than the former (as demonstrated by the general uselessness of "cuture vulture" Jai Rodriguez on Queer Eye for the Straight Guy). Turning an unprepossessing Texas gal into an elegant and erudite Washington lady, all ready for the Georgetown cocktail party circuit, may be one challenge that even Judges Posner and Kozinski can't pull off...
* Now, before all you Grisham fans jump down her throat, allow A3G a word of explanation. There is no denying that Grisham is a skilled genre writer; A3G has read and enjoyed several Grisham books, which make for good beach reading. But when a prospective Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court is asked by a sitting United States Senator to name her favorite writers, one would expect her to mention someone a little more "literary" and "highbrow" than John Grisham.
If you're interested in learning about A3G's literary tastes, so you can make fun of her for being a literary snob, check out Will Baude's interview of her (question 20).