NYT Finally Notices Bush Hypocrisy

4 comments July 7th, 2007at 03:17pm Posted by Eli

Only now does the NYT notice that Dubya’s record on commutations and pardons completely contradicts his commutation of Libby’s sentence:

As governor of Texas… Mr. Bush discussed and applied a consistent and narrow standard when deciding whether to issue pardons and commutations. And that standard appears to be at odds with his decision in the Libby case.

Mr. Bush explained his clemency philosophy in Texas in his 1999 memoir, “A Charge to Keep.”

“In every case,” he wrote, “I would ask: Is there any doubt about this individual’s guilt or innocence? And, have the courts had ample opportunity to review all the legal issues in this case?”

(Note: I do not believe Bush even did that.)

“As governor, Bush essentially viewed the clemency power as limited to cases of demonstrable actual innocence,” said Jordan M. Steiker, a law professor at the University of Texas who has represented death-row inmates.

“The exercise of the commutation power in Libby,” Professor Steiker continued, “represents a dramatic shift from his attitude toward clemency in Texas, and it is entirely inconsistent with his longstanding, very limited approach.”

No shit. Most of the rest of the story is statistics and examples backing up the central thesis that Dubya is one of the least merciful governors and presidents ever, which is all well and good. But presenting this last bit without comment pushes the story over into borderline wankery:

In his memoir, Mr. Bush wrote about agonizing over the case of Karla Faye Tucker, who in 1998 became the first woman executed in Texas since the Civil War. Ms. Tucker, who was convicted in the ax murders of two people during a robbery in 1983, had become a born-again Christian while in prison, and her case drew support from across the political spectrum. Mr. Bush described feeling “like a huge piece of concrete was crushing me” as he waited with aides for Ms. Tucker’s execution. It was, he said, “the longest 20 minutes of my tenure as governor.”

Riiiiight. Dubya really agonized over that one.

In the week before [Karla Faye Tucker’s] execution, Bush says, Bianca Jagger and a number of other protesters came to Austin to demand clemency for Tucker. “Did you meet with any of them?” I ask.

Bush whips around and stares at me. “No, I didn’t meet with any of them,” he snaps, as though I’ve just asked the dumbest, most offensive question ever posed. “I didn’t meet with Larry King either when he came down for it. I watched his interview with [Tucker], though. He asked her real difficult questions, like ‘What would you say to Governor Bush?’ ”

“What was her answer?” I wonder.

“Please,” Bush whimpers, his lips pursed in mock desperation, “don’t kill me.”

Clearly a man struggling with his conscience.

Entry Filed under: Bush,Libby/Plame,Media

4 Comments

  • 1. Ruth  |  July 7th, 2007 at 5:55 pm

    Actually, he’s the frat guy that many of our wingers want. Anything approaching decency is not kewl. And he is the shining example of why we need Dems in the executive branch. it will need cleaning out, thoroughly.

  • 2. MEC  |  July 7th, 2007 at 10:48 pm

    I’m sure that Bush spent as every bit as much time considering all the ramifications before commuting Libby’s sentence as he spent reviewing death-penalty cases before deciding not to commute those sentences: All of fifteen minutes.

  • 3. Eli  |  July 7th, 2007 at 10:53 pm

    Im sure that Bush spent as every bit as much time considering all the ramifications before commuting Libbys sentence as he spent reviewing death-penalty cases before deciding not to commute those sentences: All of fifteen minutes.

    “Is he one of my people, or not?”

  • 4. spocko  |  July 7th, 2007 at 11:01 pm

    And they’ll know we are Christians by our love by our love yes they will know we are Christians by our LOOOOOOVE.


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