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-   -   Pardons (http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/showthread.php?t=348912)

Bob001 20th January 2021 11:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Segnosaur (Post 13367963)
And if the senate or house is currently under the control of a party that opposes those actions?


In general, I think pardons are an imperfect solution to a problem, for which all alternatives are even more imperfect.

(Not that I wouldn't be opposed to seeing them modify the rules...)

I don't think there's anything wrong with pardons, and most Presidents have used them responsibly. But should any power of the President be absolute? It wouldn't diminish the interests of justice to establish some provision for Congress to revoke any particular pardon.

SuburbanTurkey 20th January 2021 12:02 PM

I think suspending the pardon power during lame duck sessions could do a fair bit to curtail some of the most nakedly corrupt examples.

Make presidents use the power when there's still the possibility of electoral blowback. The lame duck is only from mid November until inauguration in January, and only occurs every 4 or 8 years. Not an unreasonable limitation to this power.

dudalb 20th January 2021 12:07 PM

Looks as if New York State will pick up the Bannon prosecution from the Feds.

Segnosaur 20th January 2021 12:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey (Post 13368036)
I think suspending the pardon power during lame duck sessions could do a fair bit to curtail some of the most nakedly corrupt examples.

Make presidents use the power when there's still the possibility of electoral blowback. The lame duck is only from mid November until inauguration in January, and only occurs every 4 or 8 years. Not an unreasonable limitation to this power.

Not necessarily a bad idea, but once again, it is dealing with something which may not be an issue if the president were not corrupt.

I can see value in a good president wanting to use a lame-duck period to pardon people who morally should be pardoned, but where the pardon would be politically unpopular. (An example of this would be Obama commuting the sentence of Chelsea Manning.)

Segnosaur 20th January 2021 12:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Craig4 (Post 13368008)
Quote:

So, in the case of something like the Vietnam War draft dodgers... you would want to see them live the rest of their lives with the threat of prosecution over their heads, just because "We can only pardon you if you are found guilty"?
It's the statute of limitations.

So fine... change that to "you would see them have the threat of prosecution for years, until the statute of limitations runs out". Perhaps better, but still a problem.
Quote:

You can also modify prosecution guidelines to not pursue such charges.
Ideally, the department of justice should function independently from the presidency.

Bob001 20th January 2021 12:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Segnosaur (Post 13368081)
So fine... change that to "you would see them have the threat of prosecution for years, until the statute of limitations runs out". Perhaps better, but still a problem.

Ideally, the department of justice should function independently from the presidency.

Not necessarily. We don't want the President locking up his opponents. But if he says "Let's not enforce federal marijuana laws in states where it's legal," or "Let's not separate babies from mothers at the border even if the law says we can," or "Let's not send minor criminals to prison if compliance and justice can be fulfilled by alternative means," that's not an abuse of power. That's exercising discretion.

lobosrul5 20th January 2021 12:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey (Post 13368036)
I think suspending the pardon power during lame duck sessions could do a fair bit to curtail some of the most nakedly corrupt examples.

Make presidents use the power when there's still the possibility of electoral blowback. The lame duck is only from mid November until inauguration in January, and only occurs every 4 or 8 years. Not an unreasonable limitation to this power.

Wouldn't the entire 2nd term for a president be safe from "electoral blowback"?

Segnosaur 20th January 2021 12:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lobosrul5 (Post 13368096)
Quote:

I think suspending the pardon power during lame duck sessions could do a fair bit to curtail some of the most nakedly corrupt examples.

Make presidents use the power when there's still the possibility of electoral blowback
Wouldn't the entire 2nd term for a president be safe from "electoral blowback"?

Not necessarily. Just because the president might not be re-elected does not mean there aren't potential ramifications from granting unpopular pardons.

The president would also want to make sure that his party did not lose congressional seats. And, they would also likely want to make sure their party maintained control of the white house (even if they personally were not running for re-election). Those could be in jeopardy if the president does something voters do not like, and they associate "the party" with "the president".

The Don 20th January 2021 12:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lobosrul5 (Post 13368096)
Wouldn't the entire 2nd term for a president be safe from "electoral blowback"?

(S)he may have an effect on the Senate and House mid term elections.

BobTheCoward 20th January 2021 12:38 PM

What do modern democracies do? Does new zealand give the prime minister pardon power?

Nessie 20th January 2021 12:39 PM

Obama pardoned someone for the illegal sale and supply of alligator skins.

psionl0 20th January 2021 01:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13368105)
What do modern democracies do? Does new zealand give the prime minister pardon power?

As a representative of the Crown, the Governor General has executive authority in accordance with section 61 of the constitution and can and pardon offenders. This is known as "The Royal Prerogative of Mercy". He does so on the advice of the Attorney General (a member of Parliament and part of the PM's cabinet).

I'm sure that it works the same way in NZ.

https://www.ag.gov.au/crime/federal-offenders/appeals

Thor 2 20th January 2021 02:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger (Post 13367119)
Well a lifetime mandatory sentence for a few ounces of marijuana and a scale would be an example of a wrong a POTUS could assess as wrong, times changing and all that.


That is an example of an unjust law. A law that has been generated by Congress and given the stamp of approval by the POTUS. The law should be overturned in the same way and pardons given and/or sentences reduced by the Judiciary, not a random pardon here or there to someone the POTUS smiles upon.

Thor 2 20th January 2021 02:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by psionl0 (Post 13367451)
I don't get the fuss. Revoking or seriously modifying the President's power to issue pardons just because he might pardon the "wrong" people is nothing more than a trivial pursuit.


Not the first time we have disagreed on a topic.

zooterkin 20th January 2021 03:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey (Post 13368036)
I think suspending the pardon power during lame duck sessions could do a fair bit to curtail some of the most nakedly corrupt examples.

Make presidents use the power when there's still the possibility of electoral blowback. The lame duck is only from mid November until inauguration in January, and only occurs every 4 or 8 years. Not an unreasonable limitation to this power.

Another option is to remove the lame duck period entirely.

bam 20th January 2021 06:53 PM

Can we really end the lame duck period? Between tightly contested elections, recounts and the increasing prevalence of election lawsuits it may become more common for it to take extra time to even know who's won.

pgwenthold 20th January 2021 07:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Thermal (Post 13367731)
And for as lockstep as the conservative justices are perceived, they told the President to go pound sand in the recent electoral challenges. They do adhere to principles of law when the mood strikes.

Sure, but come on, it's not like there was any actual question here.

How much actual judicial principle does it take to not overturn the results of a Presidential election?

pgwenthold 20th January 2021 07:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Craig4 (Post 13367875)
I'd like to see the power modified so it could only be used if someone had been found guilty. If the intent is to right a miscarriage of justice, we should give justice a chance to be miscarried.

How about the fact that a large number of the pardoned are politicians who have been convicted of corruption?

Ootta love how the group that wants to "drain the swamp" would think the way to do that is to pardon politicians convicted of corruption. Pretty clearly they have a different concept of what constitutes the political swamp.

Segnosaur 20th January 2021 08:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by zooterkin (Post 13368285)
Another option is to remove the lame duck period entirely.

Unlikely to happen.

Not only would you need to amend the constitution (good luck getting enough states and Congress critters to agree), you would need to change the way the public service functions. (Some countries use a dedicated public service to run government organizations that stays in place between leadership changes. But because the heads of various departments are selected by the incoming administration, there needs to be a period of knowledge transfer)

Sent from my LM-X320 using Tapatalk

Bob001 20th January 2021 09:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Segnosaur (Post 13368542)
Unlikely to happen.

Not only would you need to amend the constitution (good luck getting enough states and Congress critters to agree), you would need to change the way the public service functions. (Some countries use a dedicated public service to run government organizations that stays in place between leadership changes. But because the heads of various departments are selected by the incoming administration, there needs to be a period of knowledge transfer)
....

Not necessarily. The Constitution sets the date that presidential terms begin and end. But the dates of the election and electoral college meeting are set by law. They could be moved into December. Still a delay, but shorter.

angrysoba 20th January 2021 09:26 PM

In the All the President's Lawyers podcast, the host and guest agreed that Donald Trump seems to have a lot of solidarity with corrupt people as his pardons are very bipartisan.

ETA: But they say that this is the type of disgusting behaviour that pretty much all presidents engage in.

Bob001 21st January 2021 12:15 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by angrysoba (Post 13368576)
In the All the President's Lawyers podcast, the host and guest agreed that Donald Trump seems to have a lot of solidarity with corrupt people as his pardons are very bipartisan.

ETA: But they say that this is the type of disgusting behaviour that pretty much all presidents engage in.

No reasonable person can think Trump's behavior has been anything like what any other President has done. He is the only President who took office without having previous public service in lower office, the military or often both. Other Presidents have been misguided or mistaken; Trump is the only one who thought the sole purpose of the entire government was to devote itself to his personal interests.

The Great Zaganza 21st January 2021 12:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by angrysoba (Post 13368576)
In the All the President's Lawyers All the Presidents' Lawyers podcast, the host and guest agreed that Donald Trump seems to have a lot of solidarity with corrupt people as his pardons are very bipartisan.

ETA: But they say that this is the type of disgusting behaviour that pretty much all presidents engage in.

FTFY ;)

I think Biden should keep Cipollone on staff to be part of anything involving Trump: it seems the man managed to keep Trump from doing some very damaging things. Biden could use someone who knows how to talk to Trump.

angrysoba 21st January 2021 12:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bob001 (Post 13368668)
No reasonable person can think Trump's behavior has been anything like what any other President has done. He is the only President who took office without having previous public service in lower office, the military or often both. Other Presidents have been misguided or mistaken; Trump is the only one who thought the sole purpose of the entire government was to devote itself to his personal interests.

I think they only mean that other presidents of both parties have pardoned corrupt politicians and businessmen.

lionking 21st January 2021 01:50 AM

As I understand it, the US follows the Separation of powers principal. How does this gel with Presidential pardons?

Yes, I know a President can grant pardons, but how is this justified other than "he just can"?

Stacyhs 21st January 2021 02:04 AM

Included in Trump's pardons were

1. Judge Jeannine Pirro's ex-husband, Albert Pirro, a former real estate associate of Trump's, who was convicted on conspiracy and tax evasion charges.

2. Paul Erickson, the former boyfriend of Russian spy Maria Butina. He was convicted of wire fraud and money laundering.

3. Kenneth Kurson, a longtime friend and associate of Jared Kushner and Rudy Giuliani was pardoned for cyberstalking his girlfriend .

4. Sholam Weiss had his 835 year sentence for a $450 million mortgage and insurance fraud scheme commuted with the backing of Alan Dershowitz and Trump attorney Jay Sekulow. This was even after Weiss has jumped bail and fled to Austria in 2000 before being captured.

SuburbanTurkey 21st January 2021 05:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by angrysoba (Post 13368576)
In the All the President's Lawyers podcast, the host and guest agreed that Donald Trump seems to have a lot of solidarity with corrupt people as his pardons are very bipartisan.

ETA: But they say that this is the type of disgusting behaviour that pretty much all presidents engage in.

One might argue that rich people have a strong feeling of class solidarity that cuts through partisan lines.

The same podcast pointed out that a poor person serving time getting a pardon is like getting struck by lightning. It's a public spectacle, like the pardoning of the Thanksgiving Turkey. The rich, however, have a much better chance of being pardoned for their white collar crimes, be it political corruption or financial scams or whatever else.

Craig4 21st January 2021 06:13 AM

I was amused that "Joe Exotic" had a limo waiting in the visitor parking lot of the federal prison he's in on the night of the 19th.

https://www.phillyvoice.com/tiger-ki...p-pardon-snub/

JoeMorgue 21st January 2021 06:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lionking (Post 13368728)
As I understand it, the US follows the Separation of powers principal. How does this gel with Presidential pardons?

Yes, I know a President can grant pardons, but how is this justified other than "he just can"?

Even as a burgeoning democracy in 1776 America was not immune to historical traditions as to what power a head of state should have and "pardons" in various concepts/implementations go back a long time. The idea that the "Big Seat" should be able to grant mercy is not something America pulled from the aether.

Not to say that it wasn't controversial, even at the time. At the Virginia Ratifying Convention George Mason was one of only 3 delegates who refused to sign the Constitution, based partially on his opposition to the President being given a pardon powder.

pgwenthold 21st January 2021 08:04 AM

This is as fitting as can be

Among Trump's pardons is the guy involved in the USC admission scandal, who paid people to take the SAT and Community College classes for his daughter.

Of course, the White House lied about the case, just inventing facts such as the fact the daughter currently has a 3.9 gpa (she's not even enrolled anymore) and claiming that the pardon was supported by people who do not know they support it.

https://www.latimes.com/california/s...ission-scandal

Lying, cheating, corruption. Yep, that's a Trump pardon in a nutshell.

ahhell 21st January 2021 08:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lionking (Post 13368728)
As I understand it, the US follows the Separation of powers principal. How does this gel with Presidential pardons?

Yes, I know a President can grant pardons, but how is this justified other than "he just can"?

Quote:

Originally Posted by pgwenthold (Post 13369096)
This is as fitting as can be

Among Trump's pardons is the guy involved in the USC admission scandal, who paid people to take the SAT and Community College classes for his daughter.

Of course, the White House lied about the case, just inventing facts such as the fact the daughter currently has a 3.9 gpa (she's not even enrolled anymore) and claiming that the pardon was supported by people who do not know they support it.

https://www.latimes.com/california/s...ission-scandal

Lying, cheating, corruption. Yep, that's a Trump pardon in a nutshell.

Typical Trump, lying when he doesn't even need to.

psionl0 21st January 2021 10:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Thor 2 (Post 13368247)
Not the first time we have disagreed on a topic.

You can say that again.

The POTUS can start wars, set off nuclear devices - in effect start a global thermo-nuclear war and what gets your knickers in a twist? Presidential pardons.

pgwenthold 21st January 2021 12:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by psionl0 (Post 13369271)
You can say that again.

The POTUS can start wars, set off nuclear devices - in effect start a global thermo-nuclear war and what gets your knickers in a twist? Presidential pardons.

You think they are separate issues. In contrast, how he uses his ability to pardon is a reflection of who he is.

When he pardons someone convicted of $400million mortgage fraud, you can see what he considers important, for example.

Dr. Keith 21st January 2021 01:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Craig4 (Post 13368940)
I was amused that "Joe Exotic" had a limo waiting in the visitor parking lot of the federal prison he's in on the night of the 19th.

https://www.phillyvoice.com/tiger-ki...p-pardon-snub/

I wonder who they paid for their pardon and whether their refund request will be expedited.

Thor 2 21st January 2021 02:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by psionl0 (Post 13369271)
You can say that again.

The POTUS can start wars, set off nuclear devices - in effect start a global thermo-nuclear war and what gets your knickers in a twist? Presidential pardons.


You're right of course. :o

Why should we worry about dental hygiene when bowel cancer is a greater danger to your health?

Craig4 21st January 2021 08:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pgwenthold (Post 13368485)
How about the fact that a large number of the pardoned are politicians who have been convicted of corruption?

Ootta love how the group that wants to "drain the swamp" would think the way to do that is to pardon politicians convicted of corruption. Pretty clearly they have a different concept of what constitutes the political swamp.

Requiring conviction wouldn't stop this scenario. It would stop most cases where a president orders people to do something against the law and then pardons them preemptively. If a US attorney was worried about a pardon, said attorney could wait to charge until the end of a presidential term. And, anyone doing anything unlawful for a president would have to risk that chance that for personal or political reasons, the pardon might not come through.

Craig4 21st January 2021 08:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dr. Keith (Post 13369505)
I wonder who they paid for their pardon and whether their refund request will be expedited.

Maybe his attorneys should have paid more and sent an Uber.

SuburbanTurkey 22nd January 2021 04:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dr. Keith (Post 13369505)
I wonder who they paid for their pardon and whether their refund request will be expedited.

I wonder if it was an out-and-out scam on Joe, or whoever told him he could advocate for a pardon just wasn't successful in bending Trump's ear.

Susheel 22nd January 2021 04:11 AM

Was surprised Ghislaine Maxwell wasn't on the list. Also, how was Joe Exotic so sure about his probable pardon? Were certain monetary considerations in play?

SuburbanTurkey 22nd January 2021 04:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Susheel (Post 13370106)
Was surprised Ghislaine Maxwell wasn't on the list. Also, how was Joe Exotic so sure about his probable pardon? Were certain monetary considerations in play?

That's what makes me think he got scammed. Maybe someone was telling him it was all good to go, but was really just pumping him for cash.


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