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Four Color Politics

Mainly the Quotes of the Morning, with occasional Other Crap.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Quotes of the Morning: It's Good to Be King

“No one can say that Fearless Leader is not a man of his word. He is a rock of integrity. When Fearless Leader says something like this…”

“If there’s a leak out of my administration, I want to know who it is . . . If the person has violated law, that person will be taken care of.”
-George ‘Dubya’ Bush, September 30, 2003

“…you know that he means it. He will take care of that person. Personally. So when bad things happen…”

“Former White House aide I. Lewis ‘Scooter’ Libby cannot delay his 2 1/2-year prison term in the CIA leak case, a federal appeals court unanimously ruled Monday.
The decision is a dramatic setback for Libby, who likely will have to surrender to prison in weeks. The ruling puts pressure on President Bush, who has been sidestepping calls by Libby's allies to pardon the former chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney.
Libby was convicted in March of lying and obstructing the investigation into the 2003 leak of CIA operative Valerie Plame's identity. He is the highest-ranking White House official ordered to prison since the Iran-Contra affair.
The decision leaves Libby with few legal options, the most likely being an appeal to Chief Justice John Roberts. Barring an intervention there, it seems only Bush could spare Libby prison time.”
-Associated Press, July 2, 2007

“…Fearless Leader isn’t afraid to step in and take care of the criminal in question.”

“President Bush spared former White House aide I. Lewis ‘Scooter’ Libby from a 2½-year prison term in the CIA leak investigation Monday, delivering a political thunderbolt in the highly charged criminal case. Bush said the sentence was just too harsh.
Bush’s move came just five hours after a federal appeals panel ruled that Libby could not delay his prison term. That meant Libby was likely to have to report soon, and it put new pressure on the president, who had been sidestepping calls by Libby’s allies to pardon Vice President Dick Cheney’s former chief of staff.
‘I respect the jury’s verdict,’ Bush said in a statement. ‘But I have concluded that the prison sentence given to Mr. Libby is excessive. Therefore, I am commuting the portion of Mr. Libby’s sentence that required him to spend thirty months in prison.’”
-Associated Press, July 2, 2007

“After all, the law is for lesser men than those in the White House. Their laws are not those of the rabble, and making one of these fine men attend a prison (which I have heard are filled with criminals and non-‘white male executive’ types) would be unfair. They live by a higher standard.”

“We fully recognize that the Constitution provides that commutation decisions are a matter of presidential prerogative and we do not comment on the exercise of that prerogative. We comment only on the statement in which the President termed the sentence imposed by the judge as ‘excessive.’ The sentence in this case was imposed pursuant to the laws governing sentencings which occur every day throughout this country. In this case, an experienced federal judge considered extensive argument from the parties and then imposed a sentence consistent with the applicable laws. It is fundamental to the rule of law that all citizens stand before the bar of justice as equals. That principle guided the judge during both the trial and the sentencing.

Although the President’s decision eliminates Mr. Libby’s sentence of imprisonment, Mr. Libby remains convicted by a jury of serious felonies, and we will continue to seek to preserve those convictions through the appeals process.”
-Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, July 2, 2007

“After all, Mr. Libby was a great man who did a lot of vital work in obstructing justice for the Office of the Vice President (aka the fourth branch of the government), and Vice-Leader Cheney knows how important that is for America.”

“I have always considered him [Libby] to be a man of the highest intellect, judgment and personal integrity — a man fully committed to protecting the vital security interests of the United States and its citizens. … The defense has indicated it plans to appeal the conviction in the case. Speaking as friends, we hope that our system will return a final result consistent with what we know of this fine man.”
-Vice-Leader Dick Cheney, July 2, 2007

“Of course that was an endorsement from Vice-Leader Cheney (who was taking time out from his busy schedule of eating babies and shooting old men in the face). Other people are not quite as happy about the unique form of justice shown.”

"This is a complete departure from the usual procedure. Scooter Libby is getting a very special brand of justice. He is getting enormous privileges that are not available to ordinary criminal convicts."
-Jeffrey Toobin, CNN Legal Analyst, July 2, 2007

“But most of the people complaining are Democrats, so it must all be just partisan bickering again.”

"Today's decision is yet another example that this Administration simply considers itself above the law. This case arose from the Administration's politicization of national security intelligence and its efforts to punish those who spoke out against its policies. Four years into the Iraq war, Americans are still living with the consequences of this White House's efforts to quell dissent. This commutation sends the clear signal that in this Administration, cronyism and ideology trump competence and justice."
-Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, July 2, 2007

"The President's decision to commute Mr. Libby's sentence is disgraceful. Libby's conviction was the one faint glimmer of accountability for White House efforts to manipulate intelligence and silence critics of the Iraq War. Now, even that small bit of justice has been undone. Judge Walton correctly determined that Libby deserved to be imprisoned for lying about a matter of national security. The Constitution gives President Bush the power to commute sentences, but history will judge him harshly for using that power to benefit his own Vice President's Chief of Staff who was convicted of such a serious violation of law."
-Sen. Harry Reid, July 2, 2007

“The President’s commutation of Scooter Libby’s prison sentence does not serve justice, condones criminal conduct, and is a betrayal of trust of the American people. The President said he would hold accountable anyone involved in the Valerie Plame leak case. By his action today, the President shows his word is not to be believed. He has abandoned all sense of fairness when it comes to justice, he has failed to uphold the rule of law, and he has failed to hold his Administration accountable.”
-Speaker Nancy Pelosi, July 2, 2007

"Only a president clinically incapable of understanding that mistakes have consequences could take the action he did today. President Bush has just sent exactly the wrong signal to the country and the world. In George Bush's America, it is apparently okay to misuse intelligence for political gain, mislead prosecutors and lie to the FBI. George Bush and his cronies think they are above the law and the rest of us live with the consequences. The cause of equal justice in America took a serious blow today."
-Sen. John Edwards, July 2, 2007

"This decision to commute the sentence of a man who compromised our national security cements the legacy of an Administration characterized by a politics of cynicism and division, one that has consistently placed itself and its ideology above the law. This is exactly the kind of politics we must change so we can begin restoring the American people’s faith in a government that puts the country’s progress ahead of the bitter partisanship of recent years."
-Sen. Barack Obama, July 2,2 007

"From my viewpoint, the president has stepped in to short circuit the rule of law and the system of justice in our country. In so doing, he has acknowledged Mr. Libby's guilt for, among other things, obstruction of justice, which by definition is covering up for somebody in a crime. By commuting his sentence, he has brought himself and his office into reasonable suspicion of participation in an obstruction of justice. The commutation of (Libby's) sentence in and of itself is participation in obstruction of justice."
-Ambassador Joseph Wilson, July 2, 2007

“President Bush's eleventh hour commutation of Scooter Libby’s sentence makes a mockery of the justice system and betrays the idea that all Americans are expected to be held accountable for their actions, even close friends of Vice President Cheney. It's a tragedy that with young Americans paying the ultimate price in Iraq for this administration's mistakes, this White House continues to avoid accountability and reward deceit for their friends and supporters.”
-Senator John Kerry, July 2, 2007

“The rule of law is for lesser men. Our leaders are made of sterner stuff. God save the King.”


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