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Hissyspit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 03:28 PM
Original message
Legal Scholars Outraged by Talk of Blanket Pardon
Source: Washington Independent

Legal Scholars Outraged by Talk of Blanket Pardons
Whether Bush Can Grant His Administration Pre-emptive Pardons on Torture, a Dicey Area of the Law


By DAPHNE EVIATAR 12/8/08 1:53 PM

In his Nov. 16 interview on CBSs 60 minutes, President-elect Barack Obama reiterated his pledge to shut down Guantanamo Bay and end U.S.-sponsored torture. Both actions would be part and parcel of an effort to regain Americas moral stature in the world, he said. Obamas advisers are similarly encouraging him to look to the future and avoid the appearance of seeking vengeance for past practices. But many legal experts insist its as important not to let those responsible for diminishing Americas moral stature get away scot-free.

When we speak about accountability, were not talking about vengeance, lawyer and writer Scott Horton told at a packed forum on torture at New York University School of Law last week. Were really talking about the future. President George W. Bush has set a precedent that we cannot let stand. Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), who also attended the forum, added: Accountability is one of the most important questions before the country. Its critical to preventing a recurrence of the lawbreaking that clearly has been done (by this administration).

Liberal lawyers and civil rights advocates have been calling for prosecutions, even impeachment, of Bush officials tied to torture for years. Elizabeth Holtzman, a former Democratic congresswoman, published The Impeachment of George W. Bush in 2006. Michael Ratner, president of the Center for Constitutional Rights, published his book, The Trial of Donald Rumsfeld: A Prosecution by Book, in September. Others have published volumes of evidence implicating Bush officials in potentially criminal conduct . Among the most influential are Jane Mayers The Dark Side, Phillipe Sands Torture Team and The Torture Papers, a collection of administration documents on detainee abuses edited by Karen Greenberg, executive director of the Center on Law and Security at NYU, and Joshua Dratel, a prominent defense attorney who represents detainees at Guantanamo Bay.

But as the administration nears its end, the debate over what Obama should do about officials who authorized torture, humiliation or systematic abuse of detainees as part of the war on terror has become more urgent. (The NYU forum attracted so much interest that hundreds of vociferous supporters of prosecution were denied entry into the auditorium because of fire-code restrictions.) Even as the pressure on Obama to take action grows, some prominent legal experts are urging restraint.

Read more: http://washingtonindependent.com/21313/21313
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FiveGoodMen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 03:49 PM
Response to Original message
1. The pardon should be eliminated
All of them. Always.

Make the courts do their jobs; don't give one fuck-head the right to undo it.
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totodeinhere Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 07:14 PM
Response to Reply #1
17. That would take a constitutional amendment. It would be very hard to do. n/t
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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 08:22 AM
Response to Reply #17
22. No need to deal with pardon powers - hold pardoned as material witnesses, they can't claim the 5th
They can be held indefinitely and forced to testify against the others. We want to go after those who issued the orders -- right up to the very top -- who weren't pardoned. Bush can't pardon himself.

By compelling those who are pardoned to testify, and jailing those who refuse to cooperate with the courts, two good purposes of justice are served rather than simple societal punishment.
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melm00se Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 09:23 AM
Response to Reply #22
23. gonna hold them
indefinitely? in Guantanamo Bay perhaps?

Starting to sound familiar?
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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-10-08 11:50 AM
Response to Reply #23
29. No, the Alexandria, VA City jail.
Not a bad place to cool your heels until you start to go nuts with boredom, and then most people will talk. Ask Judy Miller. She knows.
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FiveGoodMen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 12:04 PM
Response to Reply #17
28. Agreed. But it ought to be done anyway.
We didn't want a king. We shouldn't give anyone the power to override the law -- that's too much like having a king.
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russspeakeasy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:00 PM
Response to Original message
2. I want him in jail...I want him chained to Cheney, et al.
and I want Nancy Pelosi to have to clean their cells twice a
day...
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Kolesar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:25 PM
Response to Reply #2
6. I knew there was going to be "one of you" on this thread...eom
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FiveGoodMen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 05:00 PM
Response to Reply #6
8. One of Who?
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Jim Sagle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 07:00 PM
Response to Reply #8
14. One actual Democrat is what he meant.
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FiveGoodMen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 07:04 PM
Response to Reply #14
15. Ah. Good, then.
Guess I took it the wrong way at first.
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proud2BlibKansan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 05:15 PM
Response to Reply #6
10. I want them in jail too
So now there are two of us on this thread.
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AndyTiedye Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:04 PM
Response to Original message
3. Send Them to the Hague! The International Criminal Court Does Not Accept Presidential Pardons




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Bette Noir Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:26 PM
Response to Reply #3
7. Exactly.
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Mudoria Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 06:49 AM
Response to Reply #3
21. Not going to happen... ever
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PetrusMonsFormicarum Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:11 PM
Response to Original message
4. What Dreams May Come
n/t








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micraphone Donating Member (284 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 04:17 PM
Response to Original message
5. Oops
Edited on Mon Dec-08-08 04:18 PM by micraphone
EDIT: replied to wrong thread! Duh...
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proud progressive Donating Member (358 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 05:08 PM
Response to Original message
9. WHO in his administration is suggesting a pardon?
and vengeance? i thought the phrase was 'justice for ALL'. where is the justice for those who have been wronged by these guys? obama does not need to do this to get his agenda thru congress, so why would he even float this?
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Winterblues Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 10:05 AM
Response to Reply #9
25. It certainly does not have to come from Obama
In fact I don't think he should waste one second of his time on this issue...unless no one else does, that is.. I suspect there will be many that will step up and ask that justice not be denied..
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Wizard777 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 05:37 PM
Response to Original message
11. Even with a blanket pardon there are still two avenues of prosecution open.
State charges of murder. Which would not be covered under the federal pardon. If Bush insists his agreement with Iraq is binding upon a presidential signiture without congressional ratification. Then we won't challenge that precedent. We'll send Bush off to the Hague. Clinton signed on to the ICC but it wasn't ratified by Congress. The President can only pardon offense against the United States. He cannot pardon offense against the law of nations. The constitution does not give him that power.
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tblue37 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:43 PM
Response to Original message
12. Because Ford pardoned Nixon and Carter and Clinton
did not choose to pursue lawbreakers from the Republican admninistrations that preceded them, the malefactors from those administrations were able to return to positions of power in W's administration and wreak even greater havoc on the country and the world. They need to be prosecuted and jailed, both for justice and as a deterrent. Future "evildoers" need to see justice done, and these creeps need to be prevented from ever holding power or influence again.
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Optimistic Donating Member (139 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 06:47 PM
Response to Original message
13. Bush will pardon
Everyone who worked in the Government in the last 8 years but will let the 2 border agents rot in jail
I still expect him to decalre Marshall law and not give up power till he is ousted in a coup.
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BrklynLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 07:28 PM
Response to Reply #13
18. I think that prez shit-for-brains will have to be dragged kicking and screaming from the White House
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Bake Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 11:16 AM
Response to Reply #13
27. It's "martial." "Martial law."
Bake
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Solly Mack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 07:06 PM
Response to Original message
16. ...
K&R
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Festivito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 07:47 PM
Response to Original message
19. Oh my, oh, "OUTRAGE" oh no, oh my my my.
I hope they manage to untwist their panties before the final flush sends OUR COUNTRY DOWN THE TOILET! I hate going down the tubes with a bunch of twisted ass-wipes.

Outrage!?

It's like hearing a bunch of buffoons with no chests and weak arms.
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Hugin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 09:27 AM
Response to Reply #19
24. I wonder if they'll write a sternly worded letter?
And maybe send it Certified Return Receipt Requested?
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dickthegrouch Donating Member (838 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-08-08 10:28 PM
Response to Original message
20. Wouldn't a pardon before conviction be ....
a prima facie acknowledgment of guilt?

I would use that pardon as evidence of guilt in the court after the pardons were declared null and void for the purposes of defence.

I think this falls into the realm of letting them have enough rope to hang around their scrawny necks.
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bigmonkey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-09-08 10:40 AM
Response to Original message
26. Restrict the pardon's applicability to persons convicted of a crime.
The extension of the pardon by Gerald Ford (in the Nixon case) to cover crimes that "may have been committed" is what really destabilized the system. Get a case before the Supreme Court, and get a ruling that it only applies to persons who have been convicted of a crime. Ford extended the definition of the pardon, it needs to be reset.
No amendment necessary to do this, it's the common-sense definition of a pardon, and it destroys the John Yoo basis for putting the president outside the rule of law. This way the courts can make the crime and its details public, and the public at large can make a judgment about the use of the pardon.
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