Focus on the Family founder James Dobson told his radio audience Wednesday that he supports Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers, but he isn’t at liberty to say completely why.
“It was leaked to the media that I’ve had conversations with Karl Rove, and the White House, which is true, but I have not revealed those conversations,” Dobson said, confessing that he is not 100 percent sure he is doing the right thing by breaking rank with some fellow conservatives to support President Bush’s nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court.
“I’ve been saying, ‘Lord, if I’m wrong here, and even if I’m right, get the message through to me. I am listening to you. I will do anything you want. If this is not the person you want on that Supreme Court, all you have to do is tell me so, and do it through any means you want to–through the Scripture, through friends, through my pastor, through things that people write or say or call to this ministry. Let me know exactly what you want me to do and I will follow that.’
“In the meantime I am doing what I think is right, and I just ask you to second-guess me, because I don’t have the intelligence or the wisdom to know what is right in every situation, and certainly not this one.”
Dobson shared some, but not all of his reasons behind his decision.
“I can’t reveal it all, because I do know things that I’m privy to that I can’t describe, because of confidentiality,” he said. “And there’s some things I can’t go into.”
“I can only say so much and after that say those are confidential conversations and contacts and I can’t go very far in that direction, and I won’t violate that.
“But with that in mind, let me try to explain why at this moment, and we’ll know more when the hearings are held, I hope, why I believe George Bush has made an outstanding selection of Harriet Miers.
“For one thing she is a deeply committed Christian. She has been a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ since the late 1970s. I know the individual who led her to the Lord. I know the church she goes to. I know it’s a very conservative church. I know that she is a tithe-paying member of that church. I know that she has deep convictions about things.
“And I have talked at length to people that know her and have known her a long time. Some of them have been a close personal friend of hers for 25 years. And I trust these people because I know them. I know who they are, and I know their character. And I know what they stand for, and I know their love for the Lord.
“And they have said to me, ‘This is a good woman, who will do the right thing when the chips are down. She will not be a disappointment, and you cannot go wrong by seeing her in one of the most powerful positions in this country, that being the justice who replaces Sandra Day O’Connor on the court.’
“I heard that over and over from people who are not giving me hearsay. They are saying, ‘This is my personal friend. I know what she cares about.'”
Another reason, Dobson said, is that Bush “has been more clear about his views on the sanctity of life and on reforming the judiciary than any other subject.”
“I mean it has been unequivocal, and during his campaign, he made it very clear what kind of judge he wanted to put on the court: that he wanted somebody in the mold of Clarence Thomas or Antonin Scalia. He said he would not put anyone on the court who would try to make social policy from the bench. He said he would not put anybody on the court who would legislate from the bench, who would try to create law, which is not constitutional, instead of interpreting law, which is constitutional. He said all of that.”
Dobson said in Bush’s four and a half years in office, “he has never disappointed us one time” on those two issues.
“I don’t believe he would have nominated Harriet Miers if he knew that she was going to assassinate what he believed in and that the court would not be reformed the way he said he wants it to be,” Dobson said.
“When you know some of the things that I know, that I probably shouldn’t know, that take me in this direction, you will understand why I have said, with fear and trepidation, why I have said that I believe Harriett Miers will be a good justice,” he said.
“If I have made a mistake here, I will never forget it,” Dobson said. “The blood of those babies who have died will be on my hands to some degree. That’s why it has weighed so heavy on me, and why I don’t take this step lightly. I’m in contradiction to people that I love and are coming from the other perspective. They may be right and I may be wrong. But Lord, if I am right confirm it, and if I am wrong, chastise me, and I will repent of it and come before these microphones.”
Dobson concluded that “Maybe during the confirmation hearings we will learn something.”
For now, he said: “My advice to conservative Christians who care about life as much as we do is to stay cool, keep your powder dry. Don’t assassinate the character of this woman before you know who she is. Give the process time to play out.”
Bob Allen is managing editor of EthicsDaily.com.