I don’t claim to be a White House insider. I periodically hear from the White House because of my extensive involvement in the so-called religious right, which started with my founding of the Moral Majority in 1979.

As such, I received a call from White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove this week, explaining that Harriet Miers was stepping down after her nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court.

I appreciate that Ms. Miers decided to bow out of the nomination process to protect President Bush, who is a close friend of hers. She believed the Democrats’ demand for her written work while in the White House would put undue pressure on the president. I value such allegiance and clear thinking.

I also think her nomination was probably a bit hasty. While I supported President Bush following her nomination, I believe there are better nominees who would be shrewd and conservative jurists, people proficient in constitutional reasoning.

When Mr. Rove called, I had the opportunity to suggest a few names of people I think would be exceptional jurists. I won’t disclose who those individuals are, because the Washington Post and the New York Times would make it virtually impossible for them to be confirmed.

If President Bush now follows his campaign promise to nominate a clear conservative to the high court, he can expect a demanding battle. (I’m not saying that Ms. Miers was not a conservative, but the recognized chronicle of her life’s work was simply too incomplete.)

But President Bush can also expect conservatives to fall in line behind him. We elected this man to the Oval Office believing that he would impose a lasting legacy on the Supreme Court.

This is his opportunity to do just that.

It’s time to appoint a gallant conservative and let the chips fall where they may.

A political brawl will almost certainly be imminent with such a nomination, but as George Will stated on Laura Ingraham’s radio broadcast yesterday, “Fights are good for politics.”

I agree. And I think this may be the perfect time for a bare-knuckles political fight, because the fate of our high court is at stake. If the Democrats initiate a filibuster, so be it.

Sen. Orrin Hatch said if the Democrats do indeed launch a filibuster, “We’re gonna have to take them on.”

As they say in Virginia, them’s fightin’ words. And they are words that we should not be afraid to embrace.

I truly believe that President Bush’s political base will come to his aid in such a fight. I am confident that his evangelical Christian supporters would be honored to go to battle with this man we helped elect to office.

His Miers nomination caused a bit of a rift in the conservative ranks, but it is nothing that can’t be fixed by nominating a conservative we can all get behind. I hope President Bush understands how much his supporters appreciate him and would stand up for him.

Mathew Staver, president of Liberty Counsel, said following the Miers withdrawal, “It is not often that you have the opportunity to correct a bad decision, but this is exactly the opportunity afforded to the president.”

Indeed, this is a rare occasion to “do it over, do it better, throw down the gauntlet and leave a great and lasting legacy.”

And it is the perfect occasion to rally the conservative base and simultaneously secure the future of our Supreme Court for years to come.

Mr. President, we stand ready to fight for you and your legacy. Give us a well-credentialed conservative champion and blow the trumpet!

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