Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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October 7, 2005
By: Kevin Drum

REMINISCING ABOUT MIERS....Jim Schutze wrote an interesting column about Harriet Miers in the Dallas Observer yesterday. Here's a paraphrase:

No, she wasn't gay friendly, but she was less unfriendly than most.

No, she wasn't a civil rights champion, but she came around on issues of minority representation sooner than many including many Democrats.

Yes, she opposed abortion, but not with an awful lot of fervor.

And an activist lawyer recalls that "She kept the Bar Association off our backs."

Obviously these are recollections from 15 years ago, but the picture Schutze paints is of someone who was conservative, but fairminded and uncomfortable with extremism. His conclusion:

In the late 1980s and early '90s, Dallas as a whole was far to the right of the rest of the nation. It was a city that seemed to have been passed over by much of the political change that swept the nation in the 1960s and '70s. The battle over the city council configuration single-member seats instead of at-large representation was the first instance of truly aggressive political action by minorities.

In that context, and with politics being the art of available alternatives, Harriet Miers looked good to many liberals. In fact, she danced just on the verge of progressivism. She supported the change to an all single-member council system. But later she told reporters she chose not to seek reelection herself because she was not interested in representing only one district instead of the city at large.

Dallas is about to find out where all of that puts Miers and Dallas on the national political spectrum.

The whole thing is worth reading.

Kevin Drum 3:43 PM Permalink | Trackbacks

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