Nomination to Court
* Harriet Miers, President Bush's latest nominee to the Supreme Court, said yesterday that she didn't want to be a justice after all.
In a letter to the president, Miers mentioned hearings that were to be held in the U.S. Senate to approve or reject her nomination. Senators had asked for documents Miers had written as part of her job as White House lawyer. Miers, 60, said giving those documents would go against the "separation of powers," in which each branch of the government is independent.
The Constitution created three branches of government: the legislative (Congress); the executive (the president and people who work for him at the White House); and the judicial (the courts, including the Supreme Court).
Miers's nomination has been in trouble almost since the president chose her Oct. 3. Some people wondered whether she was qualified to be a justice on the highest court in the United States. Though Miers was a successful lawyer in Texas, she has never been a judge. Most recent Supreme Court justices were judges before coming to the high court.
The Senate approves most Supreme Court nominations. The last time a nominee withdrew was 18 years ago.
Miers will continue to work at the White House. Bush said he will nominate someone else soon. In the meantime, Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor will continue to serve on the court until another justice is approved.
Write to a Writer
* Have you ever thought of writing to your favorite author?
If so, you might want to enter the Library of Congress's Letters About Literature contest. Kids are asked to write letters to their favorite authors, telling them what books inspired them and why.
Winners will be chosen for grades 4-6, 7-8 and 9-12. Winners on the state level (this includes D.C.) win cash prizes, Target gift cards and the chance to compete in the national finals.
Past winners have written to Sharon Creech, Lemony Snicket, J.K. Rowling, Judy Blume and Jerry Spinelli.
For more information, go to www.loc.gov/letters.