Little in public life is as antidemocratic, as redolent of monarchical caprice, arguably as un-American as the power of governors and presidents to pardon criminals and commute sentences.
No doubt there are times when a chief executive’s pardon is all that saved an improperly convicted person from unfair punishment. The challenge may be to find a way to replace the pardon with something more democratic and transparent and just as effective.
Until then, we have memories of President Gerald Ford pardoning President Richard Nixon; President Bill Clinton pardoning fugitive Marc Rich for financial misdeeds; of President George W. Bush cutting the sentence of Scooter Libby for perjury and obstruction of justice in the outing of the CIA’s Valerie Plame.
And Schwarzenegger commuting the sentence of a political crony’s son.
Read the whole story in the Los Angeles Daily News