Wednesday, October 12, 2005

President Bush Applies Religion Test to SCOTUS

A nice catch by diarist Pounder over at DailyKos, pointing out Article VI, Section 3 of the Constitution, but first, why Bush says he chose Miers:
President Bush sought again today to reassure conservatives about his Supreme Court nominee, Harriet E. Miers, and he said that Ms. Miers's religion was pertinent to the overall discussion about her.

"People are interested to know why I picked Harriet Miers," Mr. Bush said. "They want to know Harriet Miers's background. They want to know as much as they possibly can before they form opinions.

"Part of Harriet Miers's life is her religion," Mr. Bush went on, in remarks that may be revived during Ms. Miers's confirmation hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee several weeks from now. "Part of it has to do with the fact that she was a pioneer woman and a trailblazer in the law in Texas."

The president went on to say, in a brief question-answer session with reporters at the White House, that Ms. Miers was "eminently qualified" to sit on the court, and that she would be a justice who "will not legislate from the bench but strictly interpret the Constitution."

Mr. Bush's allusion to Ms. Miers came shortly after the conservative James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, was quoted as saying on a radio program that he had discussed the nominee's religious views with the president's chief political adviser, Karl Rove.

Mr. Dobson said he talked to Mr. Rove on Oct. 1, two days before Mr. Bush announced his choice, and had been told that "Harriet Miers is an Evangelical Christian, that she is from a very conservative church, which is almost universally pro-life, that she has taken on the American Bar Association on the issue of abortion and fought for a policy that would not be supportive of abortion, that she had been a member of the Texas Right to Life."

Mr. Dobson went on to say that he and Mr. Rove had not discussed cases that might come before the court and that "we did not discuss Roe v. Wade in any context." The Supreme Court's 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade established a woman's right to have an abortion.

So there is a religious test in this White House where you must be a Christian to be nominated to the Supreme Court by this President? How interesting, let's now take a look at Article VI Section 3 of the United States Constitution.
The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.

Blatant flaunting of the Constitution here? Or are they just oblivious? I'm guessing the latter, which may be even scarier than the former.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I don't think this qualifies as a "religious test". Typical
Bush arrogance and hypocrisy but not a "religious test." He isn't saying that only people who have her religious views are considered. He is saying that one of the things that he likes about her is her religion. Obviously it is intended as a signal to the religious right that "she is on our side." Devious but not unconstitutional.