A few articles I’ve read today.
In commuting I. Lewis Libby’s prison sentence yesterday, President Bush took the advice of, among others, William Otis, a former federal prosecutor who wrote on the opposite page last month that Mr. Libby should neither be pardoned nor sent to prison. We agree that a pardon would have been inappropriate and that the prison sentence of 30 months was excessive. But reducing the sentence to no prison time at all, as Mr. Bush did — to probation and a large fine — is not defensible.
When he was running for president, George W. Bush loved to contrast his law-abiding morality with that of President Clinton, who was charged with perjury and acquitted. For Mr. Bush, the candidate, “politics, after a time of tarnished ideals, can be higher and better.”
Not so for Mr. Bush, the president. Judging from his decision yesterday to commute the 30-month sentence of I. Lewis Libby Jr. — who was charged with perjury and convicted — untarnished ideals are less of a priority than protecting the secrets of his inner circle and mollifying the tiny slice of right-wing Americans left in his political base.
US President George W Bush has refused to rule out pardoning former White House aide Lewis “Scooter” Libby, convicted over a CIA-leak case.
“As to the future I rule nothing in and nothing out,” he told journalists in Washington. But he also reiterated that he thought Libby’s non-prison punishments should stand.