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George W. Bush

Presidency

Who were Bush’s U.S. Supreme Court appointees?

President George W. Bush made two appointments to the U.S. Supreme Court: Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Associate Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. When Justice Sandra Day O’Connor announced her intention to retire, President Bush nominated Roberts—who was then a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit—as an associate justice to take her place. However, shortly after that, Chief Justice William Rehnquist died and Bush renominated Roberts as chief justice. Congress confirmed Roberts by a vote of seventy-eight to twenty-two.

Bush had asked Justice O’Connor to stay on the Court until another justice would be confirmed. Bush originally submitted the name of Harriet Miers, White House counsel, as his nominee for associate justice. Miers received widespread criticism on her qualifications, so she decided to withdraw her name. Bush then nominated Justice Alito, who had been serving for many years as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. The Senate confirmed Roberts by a vote of fifty-eight to forty-two.



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