Thursday, October 13, 2005

Keeping the Faith

[[R E L I G I O N]] * Philadelphia Daily News blogger William Bunch adds to the tally of high crimes and misdemeanors that might be leveled against George W. Bush in any potential impeachment trial. He points out how Bush’s admission that he chose Harriet Miers, an evangelical Christian, for a U.S. Supreme Court seat partly because of her religion violates both Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (prohibiting “employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin”) and the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978, which covers federal employees specifically and prohibits “any employee who has authority to take certain personnel actions from discriminating for or against employees or applicants for employment on the bases of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age or disability.” Bunch points out further that the prez’s choice of Miers based on her religion also constitutes a “high crime,” as it stands in violation of Article VI, Clause 3 of the U.S. Constitution, which states that "no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.”

Bunch concludes:

Do you honestly believe that Harriet Miers--with all her other qualifications exactly the same--would have been nominated to the Supreme Court if she had been Jewish, or an atheist, or Muslim? Of course not, because the president and Karl Rove, or Andy Card, or whoever’s really running things these days, knew that such a choice would not pass muster with the radical clerics who sit on “the board of directors” of Bushco.

A mid-level bureaucrat who treated a job vacancy in this manner would surely be fired. Shouldn’t we hold the president of the United States to an even higher standard?

George W. Bush has an easy choice now. He can withdraw Miers’ nomination. Or he can be impeached.
READ MORE:There’s a Religious Test After All,” by Steve Benen (The Carpetbagger Report); “Bush Criticized Over Emphasis on Religion of Nominee,” by Elisabeth Bumiller (The New York Times); “Enough Talk About Miers, Bush Really Says It All,” by Mike Healy (American Chronicle); “Miers’ Faith in Spotlight,” by Maura Reynolds (Los Angeles Times); “Role of Religion Emerges as Issue,” by Peter Baker and Charles Babington (The Washington Post); “Laura and Harriet: Are the Nominee’s Critics Sexist? Get Serious,” by John Dickerson (Slate); “Quag-Mires,” by Michael Scherer (Salon).

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