Wednesday, October 12, 2011

We Liberals Don't Blame Bush Anymore

Except when he's truly at fault.

In essence, these critics say, justice has dismantled the administrative functions of the pardon office, which is supposed to investigate the petitions filed by prisoners. As a result, all those carefully prepared requests for clemency aren't getting the kind of review they deserve.

Instead, a lot of petitions get a cursory review and are shipped off to the White House in minimalist lumps known as "summary group reports," which don't provide enough information to allow the president to make an informed choice.

The major change since 2008, when the current pardon attorney, Ronald Rodgers, took over, this former official says, is that the few early releases, or "commutations," done in the past have disappeared entirely.

"Virtually all commutations are simply round-filed as soon as they hit the door," the former justice official says. "They are no longer assigned to staff lawyers, and in all but a tiny handful of cases, no report or recommendation is forwarded to the White House."

Fuck. Fuck me hard.