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Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Sessions' Sounds of Silence

Is it just me or has Jeff Sessions been a little quiet about the Harriet Miers nomination?

Sessions met with Miers in the days after her nominations and gave her a fairly positive review ("My conversations with Harriet Miers indicate that she is a first-rate lawyer and a fine person"). But that was before the conservative opposition to Miers really coalesced and the before the Bush administration and Miers herself hurt their own cause with a series of missteps.

But since his initial meeting with Miers, I haven't heard a peep from Sessions. Now from most senators that wouldn't necessarily warrant attention. But not only is Jeff Sessions on the Senate Judiciary Committee, but his career has seen frequent criticisims "activist judges" and a focus on the administration of a "strict constructionist" judicial system.

And yet along comes the most controversial nomination of Session's senatorial career and he seems content to just stay on the sidelines. If Sandra Day O'Connor's slot is filled with a conservative, then that has the potential to dramatically shift the court to the right. A prospect which should have Sessions excited. Yet instead of being on the front lines either questioning or touting Miers' right-wing bonafides, Sessions has let fellow hard-liners like Sam Brownback (R-KS) and even mushy moderate Arlen Specter (R-PA) take the lead on the Miers nomination.

It is possible that I have just missed Sessions' reactions to Miers. Or that he is taking the defensible position that he'll wait until the confirmation hearings to decide. But Sessions has had at least a single one-on-one meeting with her, in which he presumably asked her questions he felt important. And the way the nomination is heading, I'll be very surprised if there are confirmation hearings so Sessions might not ever have to go on the record with his thoughts about Miers.

Sessions is well within his right to be low-key on this nomination, or anything else. But given his past pronouncements and his focus on the courts, I expected him to lead on the Miers nominations instead of waiting to see how the winds are shifting. Maybe Sessions is afraid an outspoken critique would burn bridges in the administration or he doesn't want to antagonize the few conservative groups who have supported Miers.

Whatever the reason for his silence Jeff Sessions is missing a chance to put himself forward as one of the more vigorous leaders of the strict-constructionist perspective and of the conservative movement as a whole.

11 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

www.votejohnsonfor102.com
Here is candidate in the house 102.

11:15:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please anyone help us get Mike "the hair" Rogers out! Now Rogers has taken his children out of Calhoun County public schools, he enrolled them in Donoho, a private school.

6:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

surprised? you people over there had the chance to elect Joe Turnham

9:07:00 PM  
Blogger Collin said...

So Mike Rogers is a bad Congressman because his children go to private school now? Unbelievable...

9:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Kenny said...

Zac,

I believe this story will answer your question:

“I am uneasy about where we are,” said Senator Jeff Sessions, an Alabama Republican on the Judiciary Committee who had so far expressed only support for the president’s choice. “Some conservative people are concerned. That is pretty obvious.”

12:40:00 PM  
Blogger PoliSciZac said...

Good link, Kenny. Thanks for the info.

6:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yep, Rogers represents his district on No Child Left Behind, federal funding for schools, etc... and yet he can afford to put his kids in a PRIVATE school. Thats what having your snout in the public trough is all about.
Another Borrow and Spend Republican.

8:43:00 PM  
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