When President Bush originally nominated Judge Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court, I commended him for picking a nominee whose beliefs and judicial philosophy were public knowlege. At the time, I wrote that this nomination would be about reading the tea leaves but rather about arguing over substantive issues. Little did I suspect that the Judge Alito and the White House would try to play down his conservative bona fides at every turn. The White House is actively pushing back against journalists who describe Alito as conservative. They probably should have stuck with stealth nominees. (Via Eric Umansky.)