Conservatives Question Miers' Christian Principles

Conservatives continue to debate over Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers as some question her adherence to her Christian faith.

"I just don't know her," said Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss, according to the Associated Press.

Former minister of Valley View Christian Church, Pastor Ron Key, described Miers, a member of the congregation, as a person of "integrity" yet did little to satisfy the question of her commitment as a conservative Christian.

"We do not know enough to call Harriet Miers a Conservative Christian," said Don Swarthout, president of Christians Reviving America's Values (CRAVE) in a statement released Thursday.

After researching on the values and beliefs of VVCC, Swarthout obtained no clues to Miers' stance on such controversial issues as abortion or marriage, as believers of the congregation are left to "sort out" such issues "on their own," according to the church website.

Undisclosed written records of Miers have left conservatives and pro-life groups on a search for her take on abortion and critical of President Bush's pick.

"At least nine of the last twelve Republican appointees to the Supreme Court have been pro-abortion," said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. "Five of the seven Justices who voted for Roe v. Wade were Republican appointees. Based on that track record, it is insulting, and frankly, irrational for President Bush to ask the pro-life community to simply trust him that Miers will be the kind of judge that will help end the national disgrace of abortion on demand.

"There is too much at stake. We will not gamble the lives of innocent children on a 'hope so' nominee," he added.

Unlike the relatively smooth confirmation process faced by newly installed Chief Justice John Roberts, political observers predict a bumpier ride for Miers, who Bush nominated on Oct. 3 to replace the retiring justice Sandra Day O'Connor. If confirmed, Miers would fill the crucial swing vote that O'Connor will be leaving upon departure.

Swarthout staunchly expressed his desire to see a conservative Christian with strict adherence to the principles that come with the faith seated on the high court.

"In order to be considered a Conservative Christian, it is necessary to follow Conservative Christian principles and I for one want a member of God's Remnant Army to sit upon the Supreme Court," he added.

Despite the lack of records and continuous questioning of Miers and her faith, others are convinced, after having spoken with the church leaders and friends of the nominee, that she is a devout Christian.

"She is a deeply committed Christian," said Focus on the Family's James Dobson on his radio program. "I know the individual who led her to the Lord. I know the church that she goes to. I know it's a very conservative church."

Dobson found from individuals who have known Miers for a long time and who Dobson trusts that Miers is "a good woman who will do the right thing when the chips are down" and that "she will not be a disappointment."

Barry McCarty, pastor of VVCC, told the Baptist Press, "I can tell you she is a genuine Christian, a genuine person of faith. She's a very gracious Christian lady."

Additionally, Rev. Rob Schenck, president of Faith and Action, after doing his own research, had the opportunity to have a short face-to-face talk with Miers.

He concluded that "Harriet Miers is quite convincingly a born-again, Bible-believing, Christian."

With the senate confirmation hearings for Miers expected to start in early November, concerns over the Supreme Court nominee are expected to persist despite President Bush's assurances that his White House counsel is the best person for the job.