Sen. Jon Kyl Responds: Time Article Falsely Accused Him of Taking Down Miers Nomination

The office of Sen. Jon Kyl (R.-Ariz.) released a letter he sent to Time magazine correcting multiple falsehoods in an article about his role in Harriet Miers nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court.

In the November 7 issue of Time, an article by Massimo Calabresi ("Kyl-ling Her Softly") accused Sen. Kyl, Chairman of the Senate Republican Policy Committee, of being "the man most responsible for taking Miers down." The article quotes "a G.O.P. staff member" that from "Day One" the conservative "[Kyl] was trying to kill Miers."

Time also accused Kyl of organizing "internal whisper campaigns" and claimed "that the White House called Kyl to object." The short article, prompted Sen. Kyl ask not only for a correction, but also an apology.

Here’s the Kyl letter:

To the Editor:

In reporting that I had concerns about Harriet Miers’ qualifications for the Supreme Court, you managed to get one thing right (“Kyl-ling Her Softly,” 11/7/05).  The rest of the story, however, is relentlessly false.

I never argued that Ms. Miers was “ideologically risky.”  I have never in my life organized a “whisper campaign,” in the press or anywhere else.  No one from the White House ever called me to object about my approach to the nomination.  I did not refer to the Washington Post’s article on abortion to anyone.  And I most absolutely did not “try to kill” the nomination “from Day One.”

It’s unfortunate that a publication of TIME’s reputation would rely exclusively on un-named congressional staff sources, who obviously have an axe to grind, for a story no one else found credible enough to publish.  More than a correction is in order here – I deserve an apology.