Did Roberts Suggest Miers for the O'Connor Slot?
Here's an odd one. A new book about the Bush Presidency makes the following claim:
  John G. Roberts Jr., now the chief justice of the United States, suggested Harriet Miers to President Bush as a possible Supreme Court justice, according to a new book on the Bush presidency.
  Miers, the White House counsel and a Bush loyalist from Texas, did not want the job, but Bush and first lady Laura Bush prevailed on her to accept the nomination, journalist Robert Draper writes in "Dead Certain: The Presidency of George W. Bush."
  . . .
  The book offers more than 400 footnotes, but Draper does not make clear the sourcing for some of the more arresting assertions — such as the one about Roberts's role in the Miers nomination, which has hitherto not come to light.
  It's hard to know what to make of this without knowing more about the source and the context in which the suggestion was allegedly made. But it seems pretty fishy to me.

  UPDATE: I somehow missed the most important line of the story, about mid-way through:
Roberts rejected Draper's report when asked about it last night. "The account is not true," said Supreme Court spokeswoman Kathy Arberg, after consulting with Roberts. "The chief justice did not suggest Harriet Miers to the president."
As between an unsourced claim by Draper and a direct denial by Chief Justice Roberts, I'll put this claim in the "bogus" category. (It does make me wonder why it's on the front page of the Post, too; slow news day, I guess.)

  ANOTHER UPDATE: Jan Crawford Greenburg seems to have more information than Draper does, and she explains what she believes happened over at her Legalities blog:
  In one of their meetings, Bush casually asked Roberts what he thought of Harriet. Roberts was politely noncommittal—which is perfectly in keeping with what any clear-thinking person would expect from a man as careful and smart as Roberts.
  But since other people were in the room, that exchange got repeated, embellished and eventually twisted around. And when the Miers nomination started to implode, at least one White House adviser defensively said, "Well, even Roberts signed off on her."
  Not true. Roberts, a man of caution with a tremendous sense of propriety, did not strenuously object when Miers' name came up—but he didn't believe it was his place to do so. He certainly never endorsed her.
  But like a game of telephone, the false rumor that Roberts "signed off on her" has now morphed into Roberts "suggested" her. Heck, maybe even the President believes it by now if he's heard it repeated back to him by his advisers. But it didn't happen.
  I also heard that Chief Justice Roberts recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa, and that he has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes suitable for nuclear weapons production. I don't know if that's in Draper's book, though.