Supporters of Miers' nomination said they hoped the single sheet of paper — delivered to the Senate Judiciary Committee as part of a shipment of 12 boxes of documents — would help reassure rebellious conservatives that she would not disappoint them if she takes a seat on the high court.
President Bush knew of the views she had held before he picked her for the court, spokesman Scott McClellan said at the White House. But he said the president "did not discuss with her or anyone else whether or not those were still her views."
One Democratic supporter of abortion rights responded warily. "This raises very serious concerns about her ability to fairly apply the law without bias in this regard," said Sen. Dianne Feinstein (news, bio, voting record) of California. "It will be my intention to question her very carefully about these issues."
Miers also returned a lengthy questionnaire to the Judiciary Committee on Tuesday in which she wrote that the "role of the judiciary in our system of government is limited. ... And of course, parties should not be able to establish social policy through court action, having failed to persuade the legislative branch or the executive branch of the wisdom and correctness of their preferred course.
"Courts are to be arbiters of disputes, not policymakers."
Congressional officials said Tuesday night the committee probably will seek additional information from Miers.
They said Sen. Arlen Specter (news, bio, voting record), R-Pa., chairman of the panel, intends to announce on Wednesday that confirmation hearings will open the week of Nov. 7 and run for four days. Majority Republicans hope for a final vote in the full Senate by Thanksgiving.... [continues]
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