Conservative senators loyal to the White House expressed persistent doubts about Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers on Wednesday despite President George W. Bush's assurances that his counsel is the best person for the job.
Sen. Trent Lott, a Mississippi Republican, told MSNBC, "I'm not comfortable with the nomination and so we'll just have to work through the process in due time."
As Republicans normally loyal to the White House expressed concerns about where Miers stands on such hot-button social issues as abortion, the White House continued its push to bolster support for its Supreme Court nominee, who has never been a judge.
"The White House is reaching out to a variety of lawmakers and groups to talk about Harriet's qualifications, conservative judicial philosophy, professional accomplishments, and record of community service," spokeswoman Dana Perino told.
Ed Gillespie, a former Republican Party chairman helping shepherd Miers through the Senate, met privately with Senate Republicans and made the case for the nominee.
Afterward, Gillespie said while many lawmakers have questions, "I feel the nomination is in strong shape .... There is a lot of support among Senate Republicans for Harriet Miers."
At this point, no member of the Republican-controlled Senate has announced opposition to Miers, and members on both sides of the aisle, including Democratic leader Harry Reid, have spoken glowingly of her.
But many, including Reid, have also said they are anxious to hear Miers' answers at her confirmation hearing before deciding whether to confirm the nominee to the high court.
Bush's nomination of Miers has drawn complaints from the right that she may not be as conservative a justice as the president had promised during his 2000 and 2004 White House campaigns.
But some conservatives complain that Miers' positions on major legal issues are unknown and that the nominee, a former head of the State Bar of Texas, has too little experience, Reuters reports.
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