Miers withdraws nomination

It was expected but rather sudden when the announcement was made Thursday morning.During an interview with NBC News’ “Today” show co-anchor Matt Lauer, conservative political columnist and author Ann Coulter discussed the possibility that Harriet Miers would likely withdraw her nomination as Supreme Court justice in the media pandemonium of the anticipated indictments of White House officials. Miers would simply disappear in the chaos.

Then it happened.

Within an hour of Coulter’s comments, “Today” launched into telephone interviews with NBC political commentators as the blanket coverage of the announcement began.

When the Senate asked Miers to complete a questionnaire on her judicial philosophy, the answers it received were deemed incomplete and inadequate.

Her fellow conservatives responded by saying that she lacked a basic understanding of important legal concepts, such as the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause.

If the nominee doesn’t have a substantial background dealing with the issues the Supreme Court must face every day, the person is not qualified for the position. Considering a person’s abilities and not personal views on issues is a noble goal, but it is hard to establish one without looking at the other.

At a time when controversy and investigations surround many government officials, when issues of what our basic rights as Americans really are, it is of vital importance that the next person nominated to the Supreme Court not only be a formidable judicial mind, but must build some kind of consensus.

There is no doubt an outspoken, tough moderate sits on a bench somewhere in this land.

The far left won’t be happy. The far right won’t be happy.

But they do not speak for the whole of this country.

The United States isn’t conservative or liberal, and a Supreme Court justice must represent that mind-set.

Opinion Editor Brian Chatman for the Editorial Board.