Let every American, every lover of liberty, every well wisher to his posterity, swear by the blood of the Revolution, never to violate in the least particular, the laws of the country; and never to tolerate their violation by others.

As the patriots of seventy-six did to the support of the Declaration of Independence, so to the support of the Constitution and Laws, let every American pledge his life, his property, and his sacred honor; let every man remember that to violate the law, is to trample on the blood of his father, and to tear the charter of his own, and his children's liberty.

Let reverence for the laws, be breathed by every American mother, to the lisping babe, that prattles on her lap; let it be taught in schools, in seminaries, and in colleges; let it be written in Primers, spelling books, and in Almanacs; let it be preached from the pulpit, proclaimed in legislative halls, and enforced in courts of justice. And, in short, let it become the political religion of the nation; and Let the old and the young, the rich and the poor, the grave and the gay, of all sexes and tongues, and colors and conditions, sacrifice unceasingly upon its altars.

While ever a state of feeling, such as this, shall universally, or even, very generally prevail throughout the nation, vain will be every effort, and fruitless every attempt, to subvert our national freedom.

- Abraham Lincoln, January 27, 1838
  Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Libby judge questions Bush commutation

Judiciary Committee prepares hearings

The House Judiciary Committee plans hearings next week into President George W. Bush's decision to commute the sentence of convicted former White House aide I. Lewis 'Scooter' Libby. They are likely to focus their inquiry into whether Bush's commuting of a jail sentence that had not yet been served was appropriate after the key judge in the Libby case questioned the President's act.

The judge is a little incensed. And this is good, because we need a few incensed judges to squelch any 'this is all partisan' angle the GOP hardliners may have dreamed up as a defense. What this is, is total bullshit. And it is obstruction of justice.

This 'get out of jail free' card was paramount to blackmail: "Scooter, I'll protect you - but keep your mouth shut." The judge of course, isn't very keen in obstruction of justice. Nice to have a few judges that aren't partisan, isn't it? We might want to keep it that way.

When asked why Bush let Libby out of jail, Snow gave one of the most Bush-indicting statements yet:

"He thought that any jail time was excessive. And therefore, he did not see fit to have Scooter Libby taken to jail," the White House Press Secretary stated, after a reporter pointed out that "Normally, somebody at least serves a day in jail, a week in jail, a month in jail," before a commutation is granted.

How wonderfully dictator-ish of you, W. The president over-ruled the decision of the judge because 'he thought any jail time was excessive.' And this for a felony, mind you. This, the guy who never gives clemency to anyone, for anything - unless of course they're his buddies.

This may turn out to be the finally straw; the ultimate overstep that brings Bush down. One can only hope. And Conyers was right there waiting for him (perhaps expecting this move?)

In a statement to RAW STORY Tuesday, Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, said the decision to commute Libby's sentence required congressional oversight.

"In light of yesterday's announcement by the President that he was commuting the prison sentence for Scooter Libby, it is imperative that Congress look into presidential authority to grant clemency, and how such power may be abused," Conyers said in a statement released to RAW STORY Tuesday night.

"Taken to its extreme, the use of such authority could completely circumvent the law enforcement process and prevent credible efforts to investigate wrongdoing in the executive branch."

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