As predicted, President Bush has tried to rally his base with his next nomination to the Supreme Court. He's tapped Samuel Alito of the 3rd Federal Appeals Court.
Unlike Harriet Miers, whose only written opinions were about how "George Bush is the awesomest preznit ever!!!!", Alito has a long and detailed paper trail. There's no mistaking that he is a staunch conservative. He was the lone dissenter in Planned Parenthood v. Casey, the early '90s abortion case that many thought could lead to a rollback of Roe. He's shown a willingness to curb civil rights across the board, and thought the Family and Medical Leave Act was unconstitutional.
The president nominated Alito because he's so clearly at home on the far right with much of his base. There's no need to read the tea leaves about his views on abortion, for instance, because they're plain as day. But this works both ways. Democrats may finally have their "extraordinary circumstance" for the filibuster. We'll see.
(Thanks to Pandagon for the links.)