David Frum, former White House speechwriter, has come down hard against Miers. From his blog at the National Review:
Harriet Miers is a taut, nervous, anxious personality. It is impossible to me to imagine that she can endure the anger and abuse – or resist the blandishments – that transformed, say, Anthony Kennedy into the judge he is today.
Nor is it safe for the president’s conservative supporters to defer to the president’s judgment and say, “Well, he must know best.” The record shows I fear that the president’s judgment has always been at its worst on personnel matters.
But earlier this morning, he came down even harder — and then quietly backpedaled. Some time between 9:52 AM and 10:18 AM this morning, he removed a paragraph from between the two paragraphs posted above. Here it is, recovered from the cache in my Google Desktop search:
She rose to her present position by her absolute devotion to George Bush. I mentioned last week that she told me that the president was the most brilliant man she had ever met. To flatter on such a scale a person must either be an unscrupulous dissembler, which Miers most certainly is not, or a natural follower. And natural followers do not belong on the Supreme Court of the United States.
Why the retreat? Did David Frum get an angry phone call from an upset White House — a White House discovering that the conservative movement isn’t as blindly loyal as the Supreme Court nominee it’s supposed to rally behind?
I realize that bloggers who make comments revise and adjust their entries. I have done such revision as well — particularly when it was clear that I got something wrong at the outset.
Frum should be given the opportunity to provide some context — but the contrast in temperature of his reaction from his earlier post to his later one is indicative of something.
We’d love to know more.
— Steve Clemons