Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Or it could be none of the below

Operation Change the Subject will begin during a prime-time press conference tonight when President Bush names his nominee to replace U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. The emerging online consensus earlier today was that Bush would pick University of Alabama graduate Edith Clement, a judge on the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, but ABC News now reports that Clement won't get the nod.

If Bush opts to replace O'Connor with another woman, the nomination could go to Janice Rogers Brown of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, or to Edith Jones or Priscilla Owen, both from the 5th Circuit. Meanwhile, if he decides to pick the first Hispanic justice, the likely selections are the 5th Circuit's Emilio Garza or Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, who reportedly cut short a trip to New England on Monday to hurry back to Washington.

Other possibilities include the 3rd Circuit's Samuel Alito, the 4th Circuit's Michael Luttig and Harvie Wilkinson, the 10th Circuit's Michael McConnell, the D.C. Circuit's John Roberts, and former Deputy Attorney General Larry Thompson.

Whoever the pick is, tonight's announcement at least will serve one purpose for the White House: "[I]t helps take [Karl] Rove off the front pages for a week."

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