The GOP is uneasy with Bush’s choice for attorney general, but only because liberals don't despise him, says Slate’s Dahlia Lithwick. Unlike Roberts and Alito, Michael Mukasey doesn’t know “all 17 twists in the Federalist Society's secret handshake”—leaving open the chance that he might be (gasp!) an independent thinker. Yet Mukasey is no "renegade outside-the-Beltway badass" either.
He's also no lover of the left, having endorsed the Patriot Act and the idea that liberty must "keep itself—and us—alive." But his independence from the White House will infuse life into the DoJ, Lithwick writes, and since Mukasey insisted on a lawyer for Jose Padilla, he “can surely appreciate why now, more than ever, the country needs one, too.”