Kyl-ling Her Softly

How an Arizona Senator worked to take down Harriet Miers

The last group President Bush thought he had to worry about opposing Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers was the Republican leadership on Capitol Hill. But it turns out the man most responsible for taking Miers down was an insider, the G.O.P.'s fourth-ranked Senator, Jon Kyl (rhymes with smile). The second-term conservative from Arizona argued at length in meetings with majority leader Bill Frist and G.O.P. whip Mitch McConnell that the Miers nomination was too risky ideologically and too costly politically, sources on Capitol Hill tell TIME. From Day One, says a G.O.P. staff member, "[Kyl] was trying to kill Miers."

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