Krauthammer nailed it

by Russ Roberts on October 27, 2005

in Politics

Here is Charles Krauthammer, on October 21st, writing on the Miers debacle:

Sen. Lindsey Graham has been a staunch and public supporter of
this nominee. Yet on Wednesday he joined Brownback in demanding
privileged documents from Miers’s White House tenure.

Finally, a way out: irreconcilable differences over documents.

For
a nominee who, unlike John Roberts, has practically no record on
constitutional issues, such documentation is essential for the Senate
to judge her thinking and legal acumen. But there is no way that any
president would release this kind of information — "policy documents"
and "legal analysis" — from such a close confidante. It would forever
undermine the ability of any president to get unguarded advice.

That
creates a classic conflict, not of personality, not of competence, not
of ideology, but of simple constitutional prerogatives: The Senate
cannot confirm her unless it has this information. And the White House
cannot allow release of this information lest it jeopardize executive
privilege.

Hence the perfectly honorable way to
solve the conundrum: Miers withdraws out of respect for both the Senate
and the executive’s prerogatives, the Senate expresses appreciation for
this gracious acknowledgment of its needs and responsibilities, and the
White House accepts her decision with the deepest regret and with
gratitude for Miers’s putting preservation of executive prerogative
above personal ambition.

Faces saved. And we start again.

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