Following up on widely reported rumors yesterday, the White House is poised to announce that Michael Mukasey, a former judge on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, will be nominated to replace Alberto Gonzales as the Attorney General. The announcement may come as early as this morning.
The president’s goal, apparently, was to find a “confirmable” nominee, and Mukasey seems to fit the bill. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) released a statement last night, describing Mukasey as “the kind of nominee who would put rule of law first and show independence from the White House.”
Indeed, this seems to be the overwhelming attitude among Bush administration critics. Senate Dems appear relieved, the progressive Alliance for Justice finds Mukasey tolerable, and People for the American Way’s Ralph Neas said, “He seems like a bona fide conservative Republican, not a right-wing ideologue."
The right, meanwhile, remains divided. Bill Kristol endorsed the nominee online Saturday night, but the Wall Street Journal noted that “some conservatives already labeling Mukasey as ‘Harriet,’ a reference to Bush’s ill-advised attempt to put his friend and personal lawyer, Harriet Miers, on the Supreme Court.”