Makeup test.

Dubious and far-fetched ideas.
Oct. 20 2005 6:02 PM

Makeup Test

A questionnaire Harriet Miers can answer.


Sens. Pat Leahy and Arlen Specter joined forces yesterday to ask Harriet Miers for a rewrite on her Supreme Court Confirmation Final, citing her "insufficient," "incomplete," and "insulting" answers on her first test. It is outrageously unfair to ask that Miers—who is busy meeting and greeting the various senators, manning her outstanding blog, doing murder boards for the hearings, boning up on Wickard v. Filburn, and making late-night calls to Specter—answer pages and pages of annoying legal questions. For one thing, she never pretended to be a great constitutional scholar—the president was the one pretending that. And for another, she should totally be allowed to copy off John Roberts' test, no matter what the Washington Post editorial page says.

But there's an easy solution here: Instead of playing "gotcha" or even "hide the salami," the folks over at the Senate should ask Miers about subjects in which she's known to excel. Some sample questions might include:

  1. Who is the bestest, smartest, coolest president ever?
  2. Please provide the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of everyone with whom you have never discussed Roe v. Wade.
  3. True or False: Barbara and Jenna totally don't appreciate how cool their mom and dad are.
  4. Is it correct for a comma to appear before a coordinating conjunction linking the parts of a compound predicate?
  5. You have named Chief Justice Warren Burger as one of your favorite Supreme Court justices. Is it his devastating intellect, his soaring writing style, or his evenhanded administration of the court that you most admire? Where do Charles Whittaker and James McReynolds rank among your Top 10 Justices?
  6. When you wrote "Dates Not Available" next to most of the events at which you gave speeches throughout your career, did you mean that you were unable to recall the dates of the events, or that Justice Nathan Hecht was stepping out with Priscilla Owen that night?
  7. Best bowling score ever?
  8. If Jesus and President Bush got into a fight, who would win?
  9. Please name any state Bar Associations from which you have yet to be suspended.

Dahlia Lithwick writes about the courts and the law for Slate. Follow her on Twitter.



Smash and Grab

Will competitive Senate contests in Kansas and South Dakota lead to more late-breaking races in future elections?

Even When They Go to College, the Poor Sometimes Stay Poor

Here’s Just How Far a Southern Woman May Have to Drive to Get an Abortion

The Most Ingenious Teaching Device Ever Invented

Marvel’s Civil War Is a Far-Right Paranoid Fantasy

It’s also a mess. Can the movies do better?


Sprawl, Decadence, and Environmental Ruin in Nevada

Space: The Next Generation

An All-Female Mission to Mars

As a NASA guinea pig, I verified that women would be cheaper to launch than men.

Watching Netflix in Bed. Hanging Bananas. Is There Anything These Hooks Can’t Solve?

The Procedural Rule That Could Prevent Gay Marriage From Reaching SCOTUS Again

  News & Politics
Oct. 20 2014 6:49 PM God’s Oligarch One of Vladimir Putin’s favorite businessmen wants to start an Orthodox Christian Fox News and return Russia to its glorious czarist past.
Oct. 20 2014 6:48 PM Apple: Still Enormously Profitable
Oct. 20 2014 3:16 PM The Catholic Church Is Changing, and Celibate Gays Are Leading the Way
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 20 2014 6:17 PM I Am 25. I Don't Work at Facebook. My Doctors Want Me to Freeze My Eggs.
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 20 2014 7:15 AM The Slate Doctor Who Podcast: Episode 9 A spoiler-filled discussion of "Flatline."
Brow Beat
Oct. 20 2014 6:32 PM Taylor Swift’s Pro-Gay “Welcome to New York” Takes Her Further Than Ever From Nashville 
Future Tense
Oct. 20 2014 4:59 PM Canadian Town Cancels Outdoor Halloween Because Polar Bears
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Oct. 20 2014 11:46 AM Is Anybody Watching My Do-Gooding? The difference between being a hero and being an altruist.
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.