It's likely that the next president will face at least one Supreme Court vacancy. Obama should promise Hillary Clinton, now, that if he wins in November, the vacancy will be hers, making her first on a list of one.How could Hillary Clinton possibly be considered an appropriate Supreme Court nominee?
Obama could ... appreciate Clinton's undeniably keen mind. Even Clinton detractors have noted her remarkable mental skills; she would be equal to any legal or intellectual challenge she would face as a justice. The fact that she hasn't served on a bench before would be inconsequential, considering her experience in law and in government.Now, why did WaPo publish this? Miller was a special assistant to Senate Majority Leader Howard H. Baker Jr. and he has a book about the Senate, but he sounds like a complete fool here. His notion that Hillary Clinton belongs on the Supreme Court is just: Everybody seems to think she's pretty smart. And it doesn't even matter that she has no judicial experience and has never done anything to indicate that she is any sort of a legal scholar or has anything like a judicial temperament.
If Obama were to promise Clinton the first court vacancy, her supporters would actually have a stronger incentive to support him for president than they would if she were going to be vice president.No, they wouldn't! They'd think that Obama shouldn't be trusted with the responsibility of appointing federal judges.
Instead of subjecting herself to a long wait and another possible defeat, [Hillary] could don one of those roomy black robes, make a potentially ineradicable impact on the course of the republic -- and never again have to worry about being liked."Roomy black robes" — is he calling her fat?
Senate confirmation would be all but certain, even putting aside the gains that Democrats are likely to make in November.Why not just beg people to vote for McCain? The Senate is going to rubber-stamp whatever unqualified, politicized judicial nominations a President Obama would send its way? Well, then, we must have the opposite party in the White House!
President Obama would engender praise (at least from Democrats) at the prospect of Hillary going toe to toe with Clarence Thomas, Antonin Scalia and Samuel Alito. Clinton's gumption and determination might make her one of the most powerful forces ever on the court, particularly when it comes to swaying other justices when the court is closely divided.Miller thrills at the prospect of law as a raw political battle. Democrats who respect the rule of law and want rights to be taken seriously should not cheer at that spectacle. And conservatives will once again get strong traction arguing — as McCain did the other day — that their judges are the ones who are faithfully subservient to the law. I know liberals don't believe that, but they must present themselves as wanting judges who bring legitimate interpretative skill and diligence to their task and operate independently from politics. Or all is lost.