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October 09, 2005

Circular Logic of Miers as "Top Lawyer"

One of the main qualifications cited for Harriet Miers is her repeatedly being cited as one of the "top" and most "influential" lawyers in the nation. Bush in his radio address yesterday repeated this, saying "Beginning in the 1990s, Harriet Miers was regularly rated one of the top 100 lawyers in America, and one of the top 50 women lawyers in the country."

Here's the circular logic of Bush promoting this credential for Miers, as Salon Magazine noted that this status was due to...her relationship with George W. Bush:

Naming her to its 50 most influential women lawyers list in 1998, the [National Law Journal said that Miers "is a big wheel in the big state of Texas, where she is chair of the Texas Lottery Commission and the personal attorney of Gov. George W. Bush."

When the NLJ named Miers to its 100 most influential lawyers list in 2000, it began by saying she was Bush's personal attorney, that she had served as general counsel for Bush's gubernatorial transition team...and that Texas newspapers have suggested that she might be named attorney general or get some other "key administration post" if Bush were elected president.

So her position as a crony of Bush in Texas led to her being cited as a top lawyer, which is used as proof that her qualifications are more than just being a crony of Bush now.

This doesn't mean that Miers' appointment can't be justified based on other qualifications, but harping on these National Law Journal ratings shows his political dishonesty.

Hat tip to Orin Kerr.

Posted by Nathan at October 9, 2005 11:09 AM