Thursday, October 27, 2005

With Miers' Departure, Sykes Again Hears Supreme Court Whispers

With Harriet Miers withdrawing her nomination this morning, former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Diane Sykes is reportedly back on the shortlist of nominees for the nation's highest bench.

See a wire story mentioning her as one of five possible female candidates.

One of her former colleagues on the state Supreme Court thinks she'd be a great choice.

"I've always thought Diane Sykes would be a very intelligent choice for Bush," said former Justice Bill Bablitch. He was effusive in his praise. "She's highly intelligent, she's very collegial, she's young enough to have a long term impact on the court, she's basically conservative, she's a soccer mom, she's got real world experience, and she went through the Senate fairly easily just a year ago," he said, the last point referring to her confirmation to the 7th District U.S. Court of Appeals.

Sykes should be able to pass the litmus tests that some think tripped up Miers with the right wing of the Republican Party, he said. "On the question of Roe v. Wade, I don't know that Diane has ever taken a position on any of that stuff, which could well be in her favor if conservatives see some of the other things in her background, such as her membership in the Federalist Society, to convince them that she's a true blue conservative."

Sykes also has a major booster in U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner. In fact, the Menomonee Falls Republican called White House counsel Harriet Miers to extol Sykes' virtues on Friday, Sept. 30. But then on Monday, Oct. 3, Miers was announced as the nominee.

"I know he finds Judge Sykes to be extremely well qualified, she is very highly regarded in the legal community, she has a keen legal intellect, just really thought she has the qualifications and characteristics you look for in a Supreme Court justice," said a Sensenbrenner aide today.

Sykes did not return a call to her office today.

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