Just a couple of points to make here, because 1) I'm busy and bone-weary and 2) my unlettered opinions about the Court, for what little they're worth, are, well, legalistic, simplistic, and hopelessly idealistic. For example, I believe that Bush was honor bound to nominate someone more moderate than himself, as that reflects the country at large. That is not to say that I believe one can use "Bush" and "honor" in the same sentence and keep a straight face.
When I was growing up it seemed a truism that the men who ascended to that lofty perch were changed by the experience. They became, over time, more concerned about the abuses of governmental power and more intent on making the common platitudes about The Land of the Free operate for every citizen. The laundry list of decisions from my youth which are despised by the Right--Brown, Miranda, Furman v. Georgia, Engel v. Vitale, Roe v. Wade--were not the result of litmus-test appointees finding for a temporally advantaged political position. In contrast, today we have two justices who are little more than careerist politicians, and decisions which sound like results from fixed Fifties quiz shows. And it's not surprising, because we have today on the Court the equivalent of fixing the intelligence around the policy; the Right's opposition to stare decisis is unprincipled and intellectually hollow. As a present-day argument, textualism and originalism have the same connection to reality as has the imaginary Ozzie and Harriet America of the Reaganauts' wet dreams.
The President of the United States, ladies and gentlemen, after floating a couple of different names in the afternoon, went on prime-time fucking teevee to announce a Supreme Court nominee, like he was introducing the newest manufactured American Idol, and said the proceedings should be conducted with "dignity". That's another word which shouldn't be used in the same sentence with his name. There may be solutions to our current political cesspool, even eventually to our political Court, but there's no known cure for mass stupidity.