.- Last evening, Harriet Miers, President Bushâs controversial pick to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day OâConnor, submitted her withdrawal from the running amid heavy criticism, particularly from religious and pro-life groups.
President Bush said that he reluctantly accepted the withdrawal but commended Miers.
He said that it had become clear that âSenators would not be satisfied until they gained access to internal documents concerning advice provided during her tenure at the White House â disclosures that would undermine a Presidentâs ability to receive candid counsel.â
Critics however, say that because Miers was never a judge, and few of her opinions are public knowledge, there simply wasnât enough material to determine what kind of Justice she would be.
One pro-life group, Concerned Women for America, called for Miers withdrawal as recently as yesterday. Jan LaRue, chief council for the group said: "We believe that far better qualified candidates were overlooked and that Miss Miers' record fails to answer our questions about her qualifications and constitutional philosophy."
"In fact,â she added, âwe find several aspects troubling, particularly her views on abortion and a woman's 'self-determination,' quotas, feminism and the role of judges as social activists. We do not believe that our concerns will be satisfied during her hearing."
Rev. Rob Schenck, head of the National Clergy Council said today that, "We should be grateful to Miss Miers for making a painfully difficult decision. In many ways, this was her ultimate service to the President and to the country. We pray God's very best in her life and for her future."
"We will nowâ, he said, âprayerfully support a new nominee that will unequivocally fulfill President Bush's promise to appoint judges who strictly interpret the Constitution instead of single-handedly amending it."