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Senators to Question Supreme Court Nominee on Reported Abortion Assurances


Two powerful U.S. senators say they want to know whether Supreme Court nominee Harriet Miers assured conservatives she will vote against abortion if confirmed.

The comments from Republican Arlen Specter and Democrat Patrick Leahy come four days after a conservative radio talk show host said he supports Ms. Miers' nomination because of "confidential" talks he had with her friends, implying she has made her anti-abortion views known.

Senator Specter, who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, told ABC television Sunday that the committee is entitled to know whether Ms. Miers took part in what he called "backroom deals."

Fellow committee member Senator Leahy said he would vote against Ms. Miers or any nominee who gave such assurances. Both senators said they doubt Ms. Miers would have done such a thing, but said they would ask her at her upcoming hearing.

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