Is Harriet Miers in Josh Bolten's sights?

Not so long ago, she was the president's Supreme Court nominee. Now she's shake-up fodder.


Tim Grieve
April 21, 2006 5:02PM (UTC)

When Time asked Harriet Miers the other day whether she might write a book when her job as White House counsel ends, she said she hadn't had time to think about it. "I can't imagine anything past the current responsibilities," she said.

Maybe it's time to start.

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An "influential Republican" with "close ties" to new White House Chief of Staff Josh Bolten tells the New York Times that Bolten is thinking about canning Miers as part of his ongoing shake-up of presidential staff. While one senior White House official denies the report, several Republicans tell the Times that Bolten thinks Miers is "indecisive, a weak manager and slow in moving vital paperwork through the system."

Would George W. Bush really let Bolten fire or demote the woman he nominated to the Supreme Court, the one he once called "plenty bright" and "the best person I could find"? We wouldn't count on it. But if Bolten is looking to make more high-visibility changes among administration officials who aren't much involved in policy and whose replacements wouldn't require the unpleasantness of Senate confirmation, he may be running out of targets of opportunity.

Speaking of which, the Times' report on Miers' future contains more talk suggesting that the White House press secretary's job is Tony Snow's if he wants it. The Times says that Snow, who had surgery for colon cancer last year, is waiting a doctor's OK before making a deal.

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Tim Grieve

Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.

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