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View Diary: Six Constitution Amendments introduced in Senate (86 comments)

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  •  The President's right to pardon for Fed. offenses (0+ / 0-)

    should be transferred to a commission appointed by the President and approved by Congress. This is analogous to the Pardons and Paroles Boards of the states.

    George H W Bush quashed the prosecutions of the last two Iran contra defendents by pardoning them before trial. Some of us are old enough to remember Gerald Ford pardoning Nixon.

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    by Kimball Cross on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 12:05:37 PM PST

    •  That would definitely take an Amendment (2+ / 0-)

      There does exist the Office of the Pardon Attorney that reviews every pardon and issues a recommendation to the President.  Though this recommendation is officially non-binding, it is very rarely ignored.

      The pardon has always been an issue and block pardons on a President's last day are not new.  Washington pardoned the leaders of the Whiskey Rebellion on his last day in office.

      For a defense of the pardoning power being vested in the Executive, I would point you, if interested, to Federalist Paper 74, written by Alexander Hamilton.

      Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

      by Wisper on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 12:20:42 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The President's pardon power (0+ / 0-)

      is vested right where it should be.  The fact that the pardon power exists at all, and the fact that it exists in the executive not the legislative, is a statement about the importance of compassion and mercy in the person of the Executive.  

      Invest that power in a commission, and it will never be exercised because issuing each one could potentially sow political divisions among the commissioners and the very political pressures that lead to unfair trials, wrong convictions and unjust sentences would be multiplied, because no one single person would have the power to stop it. Just look at Texas' death row commission, which has the power to stop executions, but never uses it.  

      As it is, American Presidents have become too stingy and downright cowardly in their use of the pardon power, and that includes the incumbent, who has displayed very little mercy in that regard.

      Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

      by Big River Bandido on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 02:41:42 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Re: Bush's pardons (0+ / 0-)

      The pardon power is not absolute. Congress could have stopped it cold by filing Articles of Impeachment against Reagan and Bush(of which the evidence of criminal activity was probably strong enough to support), (BTW, it should also been done with Libby). It takes a Congress with balls, though, which we don't really have, except when it is Republicans trying to make a point.

      I don't view Ford's pardon of Nixon in the same class because Ford was not implicated and Nixon had already resigned the office. (In contrast to Bush 1 and 2, who were more than likely aware of the illegal activity by Reagan and Cheney (and possibly complicit)

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