The report today that Fred Fielding is returning to the post of White House Counsel would, if true, be very good news for the Bush Adminstration and especially the president.
Fred Fielding was President Reagan’s counsel during the first term and the start of the second, and is widely regarded as one of the genuine “wise men” still working in D.C., respected on both sides of the aisle, but tough as can be on the rights of the president and his staff vis-a-vis Congress.
Conservatives worried that the White House might lag in the effort to replenish the federal judiciary with superb appellate justices would not have to worry about that with Fielding directing the process. He is responsible for hiring into the Reagan Counsel’s office, among others, Chief Justice John Roberts and the recently retired 4rth Circuit Judge Michael Luttig. He understands the importance of talent combined with a thorough attachment to originalism, as well as the complexities of the confirmation process when it is controlled by Democrats, and his skills in that area are exactly what the Adminstration needs at this hour.
He is also a man of great integrity, good humor and unusual calm –exactly the sort of presence that will help the White House deal not just with a hostile Congress, but far more importantly, with an enemy that shows no sign of relenting in any of its many designs against the country.