The nomination almost immediately drew criticism, virtually all of it from within the President's own party: David Frum castigated an "unforced error", Hearings before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee had been scheduled to begin on November 7, and members of the Republican leadership had stated before the nomination that they aimed to have the nominee confirmed before Thanksgiving (November 24).
Miers withdrew her nomination on October 27, 2005, and Bush nominated Samuel Alito four days later.
The questionnaire sought to gauge candidates' feelings on the use of constitutional amendments or state laws to ban abortions in the event the Supreme Court overturned a 1973 ruling that established abortion rights.
The questionnaire asked "If Congress passes a Human Life Amendment to the Constitution that would prohibit abortion except when it was necessary to prevent the death of the mother, would you actively support its ratification by the Texas Legislature." Miers answered "yes" to this question and all others listed.
As the confirmation process proceeded, more became known about Miers' personal/judicial views on abortion.
In 1989, when Miers was running for the Dallas City Council, she allegedly filled out a survey for the anti-abortion group Texas United for Life.
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However, Miers' education would later prove troublesome during her nomination process.On July 19, Bush announced that he had chosen John G. Meanwhile, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nevada) recommended Miers as O'Connor's successor.Bush agreed with Reid's suggestion, factoring comments by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter (R-Pennsylvania) and ranking Senator Pat Leahy (D-Vermont) that Bush's nominees should be outside of the appellate court system.A nominee with relevant non-judicial experience would bring a different and useful perspective to the Court.Because little was known about Miers' position on divisive issues, and because she had no prior experience as a judge, her nomination was subject to debate on both sides.
On October 3, 2005, Harriet Miers was nominated for Associate Justice of the U. Miers was, at the time, White House Counsel, and had previously served in several roles both during Bush's tenure as Governor of Texas and President.