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dirk digler
07-05-2007, 02:46 PM
http://www.pensitoreview.com/2007/07/04/bush-filed-to-uphold-victor-rita-sentence/

http://sentencing.typepad.com/sentencing_law_and_policy/2007/02/revving_up_for__3.html

Bush Filed a Motion Last Year to Uphold the 33-Month Sentence of Victor Rita, a 24-Year Marine Corps Vet Convicted on Same Crimes as Libby

Posted by Jon Ponder | Jul. 4, 2007, 4:41 pm
Last month, the Supreme Court agreed with the Bush Justice Dept., ruling against Rita’s appeal for a reduced sentence based his exemplary military service.


Sen. Joe Biden:

Tony Snow said that President Bush decided to commute Scooter Libby’s two and a half year-prison sentence for perjury and obstruction of justice, because it was “excessive.”

Yet last year the Bush Administration filed a “friend-of-the-court brief” with the Supreme Court, in an attempt to uphold a lower court’s ruling that a 33-month prison sentence for Victor Rita, who was convicted of the same exact charges, perjury and obstruction of justice, was “reasonable.”

Pres. Bush cited Libby’s “years of exceptional public service” in commuting his prison sentence. But Libby is the classic Bushie chickenhawk — a neocon bureaucrat with no service record whose fingerprints are all over the worst military planning in American history.

Conversely, Victor Rita is the real deal:

Victor Rita is a very sympathetic defendant: he served 24 years in the Marine Corps, had tours of duty in Vietnam and the first Gulf war, and has received over 35 military metals and awards. Also, he is an elderly gentleman who suffers serious health problems.

The Supreme Court ruled on the case last month:

The Supreme Court ruled yesterday that criminal sentences within guidelines set by a federal commission are generally entitled to be upheld on appeal, a decision that limits legal options for defendants who feel that they have been punished too harshly.

By a vote of 8 to 1, the court held that, even though it recently ruled that the sentencing ranges set by the U.S. Sentencing Commission are no longer mandatory, judges who follow them may be presumed to have acted reasonably…

The case that the court decided yesterday, Rita v. United States, No. 06-5754, was meant to help define “advisory.”
Legal Brief

* PDF of legal brief with Pres. Bush’s decision to uphold the prison sentence

Victor Rita, convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice, asked for a lighter sentence based in part on his past military service. But the judge gave him 33 months, as suggested by the guidelines. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit, based in Richmond, upheld the sentence, saying that penalties within the guidelines are “presumptively reasonable.”

It is customary in the pardoning process for the president to contact the Justice Dept. for input. But the White House is adamant that Bush did not speak to anyone at Justice about the Libby pardon. If he had run it past them, it’s possible he could have avoided what appears to be a spectacular blunder.

Logical
07-05-2007, 02:59 PM
Sad case of hypocrisy

memyselfI
07-05-2007, 03:01 PM
This has been an absolutely hysterical exercise. You have the entire WH press corps a spinnin and a twistin at a dizzying rate. So fast they seemed to have forgotten that there are going to be NUMEROUS folks wanting a pardon or commutation when DUHbya finally takes his sleazy azz out of the WH in 09. And yet, to hear the WH PC Clinton is the real issue with all of the pardons he did so stop your whining...

Do they realize that by damning and evoking Clinton they are setting themselves up to look like complete hypocrites YET AGAIN when they start commutin and a pardonin on THEIR way out.

ROFL ROFL ROFL

dirk digler
07-05-2007, 03:12 PM
Sad case of hypocrisy

That is exactly what I was thinking.

Here is some more info

Both Rita and Libby are first-time offenders; both were convicted of the exact same crime. One lied about gun registration; the other lied about his role in outing a covert CIA operative during a time of war. The president believes the prior should be away for nearly three years, but believes the latter shouldn't spend a single moment behind bars.

I anxiously await the explanation from White House sycophants about Bush's deep and abiding respect for a justice system in which all Americans are equal under the law.

A few other commutation notes to keep in mind today:

* Sentencing experts cannot find a single other instance in American history in which someone sentenced to prison had received a presidential commutation without having served any part of that sentence. (Bush is quite a trailblazer.)

* Defense attorneys can't wait to take advantage of the can of worms the president has opened. One legal expert said, "I anticipate that we're going to get a new motion called 'the Libby motion.'"

* "According to federal data, the average sentence for those found guilty of obstruction of justice was 70 months, not zero.

* And Bush couldn't even thumb his nose at the rule of law competently. In his commutation order, the president said Libby should still get two years probation. The law says that "supervised release," as it is called, can only follow an actual prison sentence. Now, Judge Walton doesn't know how to reconcile Bush law with real law.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 03:43 PM
There is at least one major difference that makes the whole hypocrisy angle tenuous at best.

A pardon has no precedential impact on future cases whereas this SCOTUS decision would have had a major impact on not only perjury and obstruction cases, but on criminal law in general. I believe that the administration was arguing for the concept that sentencing guidelines provided a reasonable basis for sentencing even after those guidelines were no longer mandatory. That seems like a reasonable position to establish to me (even if you think that some cases may merit commutation or pardon based on the particular facts of that case).

Beyond that, if you look at the facts of the two cases, you will find plenty of reasons to distinguish them from each other. There are always distinctions. Whether these distinctions are enough to convince you that one sentence was reasonable and the other was not is something we can all argue about I suppose.

BucEyedPea
07-05-2007, 03:47 PM
So much for equal protection of the laws and equal justice for all.
These things are voided for apparatchiks.

dirk digler
07-05-2007, 03:51 PM
There is at least one major difference that makes the whole hypocrisy angle tenuous at best.

A pardon has no precedential impact on future cases whereas this SCOTUS decision would have had a major impact on not only perjury and obstruction cases, but on criminal law in general. I believe that the administration was arguing for the concept that sentencing guidelines provided a reasonable basis for sentencing even after those guidelines were no longer mandatory. That seems like a reasonable position to establish to me (even if you think that some cases may merit commutation or pardon based on the particular facts of that case).

The problem is we are not talking about a pardon we are talking about a commutation. Bush is a hypocrite for saying that Libby's punishment was too excessive while saying this guy's punishment which is exactly the same is fair.

They both were charged and convicted with exactly the same crimes so how one can be excessive and one not is stupid at best.

HolmeZz
07-05-2007, 03:52 PM
There is at least one major difference that makes the whole hypocrisy angle tenuous at best.

A pardon has no precedential impact on future cases whereas this SCOTUS decision would have had a major impact on not only perjury and obstruction cases, but on criminal law in general. I believe that the administration was arguing for the concept that sentencing guidelines provided a reasonable basis for sentencing even after those guidelines were no longer mandatory. That seems like a reasonable position to establish to me (even if you think that some cases may merit commutation or pardon based on the particular facts of that case).

Beyond that, if you look at the facts of the two cases, you will find plenty of reasons to distinguish them from each other. There are always distinctions. Whether these distinctions are enough to convince you that one sentence was reasonable and the other was not is something we can all argue about I suppose.

Sounds like even you can't defend this.

BucEyedPea
07-05-2007, 03:56 PM
Sounds like even you can't defend this.
Are you setting an example of how you address content...and NEVER rely on ad hominem? :hmmm: :shake:

BucEyedPea
07-05-2007, 03:59 PM
The problem is we are not talking about a pardon we are talking about a commutation. Bush is a hypocrite for saying that Libby's punishment was too excessive while saying this guy's punishment which is exactly the same is fair.

They both were charged and convicted with exactly the same crimes so how one can be excessive and one not is stupid at best.
Not to mention he didn't commute Martha Stewart either.
This was a well publicized case of a famous person and it was for lying...not for insider trading as many think she was prosecuted for.

dirk digler
07-05-2007, 04:03 PM
Beyond that, if you look at the facts of the two cases, you will find plenty of reasons to distinguish them from each other. There are always distinctions. Whether these distinctions are enough to convince you that one sentence was reasonable and the other was not is something we can all argue about I suppose.

No question there is some differences between the 2 cases and I am not suggesting that Victor be let off but to say one was excessive and the other not I just don't quite get.

dirk digler
07-05-2007, 04:03 PM
Not to mention he didn't commute Martha Stewart either.
This was a well publicized case of a famous person and it was for lying...not for insider trading as many think she was prosecuted for.

I don't think he should commute anyone if they do the crime they should do the time.

HolmeZz
07-05-2007, 04:05 PM
Are you setting an example of how you address content...and NEVER rely on ad hominem? :hmmm: :shake:

He didn't bring any content. That was the whole problem.

"Beyond that, if you look at the facts of the two cases, you will find plenty of reasons to distinguish them from each other. There are always distinctions. Whether these distinctions are enough to convince you that one sentence was reasonable and the other was not is something we can all argue about I suppose."

The fact that he can't even go to the lengths to back up his own spin tells me he can't defend this hypocrisy like he might want to.

BucEyedPea
07-05-2007, 04:08 PM
I don't think he should commute anyone if they do the crime they should do the time.
Theoretically, Libby could have got 26 years too but he didn't.
In the case of Stewart, the Federal govt lied to her as well...and unfairly.
So they should get the same penalty and do the time as well but few hold the govt to the same standard as we peons get.
There were other farcical elements of the MS case too.
She really didn't commit a real crime either...the same argument those who support Libby are making which is partly why I brought it up.

BucEyedPea
07-05-2007, 04:10 PM
He didn't bring any content. That was the whole problem.

"Beyond that, if you look at the facts of the two cases, you will find plenty of reasons to distinguish them from each other. There are always distinctions. Whether these distinctions are enough to convince you that one sentence was reasonable and the other was not is something we can all argue about I suppose."

The fact that he can't even go to the lengths to back up his own spin tells me he can't defend this hypocrisy like he might want to.
I understand where you're coming from...but it was still discussing the poster more than the merits of his argument.

Just a little blowback! :evil:

patteeu
07-05-2007, 04:19 PM
Sounds like even you can't defend this.

I think you must have misread my post. I think it was a pretty significant defense without even getting into the details of each man's case (where I suspect additional justifications could be found).

patteeu
07-05-2007, 04:29 PM
The problem is we are not talking about a pardon we are talking about a commutation. Bush is a hypocrite for saying that Libby's punishment was too excessive while saying this guy's punishment which is exactly the same is fair.

They both were charged and convicted with exactly the same crimes so how one can be excessive and one not is stupid at best.

You are glossing over a lot of details to come to this conclusion.

Furthermore, you are completely missing the point of my post. Even if the facts of each case were exactly the same and even if the President believes that in Rita's particular case there are unusual mitigating factors that make his sentence excessive, he still has a reason to protect the law and it's general applicability rather than to try to force a particular outcome no matter what the other consequences are. You may have heard the maxim "hard cases make bad law." Essentially that means that precedents set on the basis of unusual facts may not be the best precedents to establish for the overwhelmingly typical set of facts.

Besides, he can always consider commutation or pardon for Rita. If all the facts are identical between the two cases, hypocrisy would be avoided not by arguing to overturn the conviction at the SCOTUS but by agreeing to commute the sentence. I don't know if Rita has even applied for a pardon or commutation, but based on the Libby situation, I'd be on that immediately and I'd be trying to get as much PR about this as possible to put pressure on the WH to grant the commutation. Who knows, maybe that's why we are reading this article today.

HolmeZz
07-05-2007, 04:29 PM
I think you must have misread my post. I think it was a pretty significant defense without even getting into the details of each man's case (where I suspect additional justifications could be found).

"A pardon has no precedential impact on future cases..."

Well we're talking about a past case, where the President deemed the sentence fitting for Rita. The same sentence was deemed excessive for Libby. Bush didn't get into any more details and neither have you. You don't want to seem to address that. You have to address the differences if you want to prove there isn't hypocrisy. You're trying to make the Libby decision out to be some point the administration was making when they haven't even come out and tried to make that case.

You believe he took the time to weigh the cases against each other before commuting Libby?

patteeu
07-05-2007, 04:32 PM
Not to mention he didn't commute Martha Stewart either.
This was a well publicized case of a famous person and it was for lying...not for insider trading as many think she was prosecuted for.

There really is no reason why he should have to commute every sentence for perjury or obstruction. Every case is different. Besides, Martha's sentence was quite a bit lighter than Libby's

But don't get me wrong, I think it would have been a great thing for Bush to have commuted Martha's sentence. First, because she was the victim of a witchhunt that shouldn't have happened in the first place, and second, because she is a Clinton lib so he could have looked pretty good, IMO, for making a point about government witchhunts without looking like he's protecting his own.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 04:43 PM
He didn't bring any content. That was the whole problem.

"Beyond that, if you look at the facts of the two cases, you will find plenty of reasons to distinguish them from each other. There are always distinctions. Whether these distinctions are enough to convince you that one sentence was reasonable and the other was not is something we can all argue about I suppose."

The fact that he can't even go to the lengths to back up his own spin tells me he can't defend this hypocrisy like he might want to.

The part you edited out of your quote was the primary content. IMO, it was such compelling content that no further work on my part was necessary to make my point. However, I decided to throw in the "beyond that" section as a bonus.

One of us has refused to offer any content thusfar in this thread, but it isn't me.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 05:00 PM
The problem is we are not talking about a pardon we are talking about a commutation.

I'm sorry, I didn't notice that I used "pardon" in my earlier post. I should have said "pardon or commutation." The main point though was that the President's action in the Libby case has no precedential impact. No court is going to look at the Libby commutation and decide that they can't give a 30 month (or whatever it was) sentence to the next guy convicted of perjury/obstruction. However, if the Rita case had been overturned in the SCOTUS, it could have had far reaching impacts on all the Federal Courts depending on how the opinion is written.

I've only briefly scanned a couple of paragraphs in the Rita decision so I'll give you an example that may not fit the case perfectly here but it will give you an idea of what I'm talking about. Let's say that they were arguing over whether a sentence that falls within the sentencing guidelines is presumed to be reasonable. If Rita wins, then that will open up a lot of future sentencing decisions to litigation over reasonableness. The state may believe they have an interest in preventing this kind of litigation because in the vast majority of cases, such sentencing *is* reasonable. If the state didn't consider such sentencing reasonable, they never would have established the sentencing guidelines in the first place. By arguing to overturn the Rita sentence, the WH would have been arguing for a precedent that could have created a lot of new litigation even when the facts were far different than in Rita or Libby.

Even if the facts were identical in Rita and Libby, and even if the WH wanted to treat both men identically, there is no reason why they would have argued to support Rita's appeal. Instead, they would commute Rita's sentence just like they did with Libby. But of course, the facts aren't the same. For example, I suspect that Rita isn't on the hook for $250,000 in fines and a loss of his livelihood (i.e. professional license) although I don't know that for sure.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 05:01 PM
"A pardon has no precedential impact on future cases..."

Well we're talking about a past case, where the President deemed the sentence fitting for Rita. The same sentence was deemed excessive for Libby. Bush didn't get into any more details and neither have you. You don't want to seem to address that. You have to address the differences if you want to prove there isn't hypocrisy. You're trying to make the Libby decision out to be some point the administration was making when they haven't even come out and tried to make that case.

You believe he took the time to weigh the cases against each other before commuting Libby?

Read post 21 and see if that makes my point any more clear.

dirk digler
07-05-2007, 05:11 PM
I'm sorry, I didn't notice that I used "pardon" in my earlier post. I should have said "pardon or commutation." The main point though was that the President's action in the Libby case has no precedential impact. No court is going to look at the Libby commutation and decide that they can't give a 30 month (or whatever it was) sentence to the next guy convicted of perjury/obstruction. However, if the Rita case had been overturned in the SCOTUS, it could have had far reaching impacts on all the Federal Courts depending on how the opinion is written.

I've only briefly scanned a couple of paragraphs in the Rita decision so I'll give you an example that may not fit the case perfectly here but it will give you an idea of what I'm talking about. Let's say that they were arguing over whether a sentence that falls within the sentencing guidelines is presumed to be reasonable. If Rita wins, then that will open up a lot of future sentencing decisions to litigation over reasonableness. The state may believe they have an interest in preventing this kind of litigation because in the vast majority of cases, such sentencing *is* reasonable. If the state didn't consider such sentencing reasonable, they never would have established the sentencing guidelines in the first place. By arguing to overturn the Rita sentence, the WH would have been arguing for a precedent that could have created a lot of new litigation even when the facts were far different than in Rita or Libby.

Even if the facts were identical in Rita and Libby, and even if the WH wanted to treat both men identically, there is no reason why they would have argued to support Rita's appeal. Instead, they would commute Rita's sentence just like they did with Libby. But of course, the facts aren't the same. For example, I suspect that Rita isn't on the hook for $250,000 in fines and a loss of his livelihood (i.e. professional license) although I don't know that for sure.

I understand exactly what you are saying and I think fairly soon we are going to find out if Bush's statement that his punishment was "too excessive" has any precedent. Apparently alot of lawyers are going to be using this statement for their clients.

Anyway my whole point is that both of these guys both lied and perjured themselves but one was the POTUS friend and the other wasn't so the latter has to spend 33 months in jail.

I just wanted Libby to serve some time and as I have said before if Bush would have pardoned him on his last day of office I would have no problem with it because that is par for the course with exiting Presidents.

WoodDraw
07-05-2007, 05:17 PM
Why would the Bush admin file an amicus brief in a case they are party too? That doesn't make sense. I'm assuming that the writer here just screwed up and used the wrong word. Anyone have a link to the actual brief?

patteeu
07-05-2007, 05:25 PM
I understand exactly what you are saying and I think fairly soon we are going to find out if Bush's statement that his punishment was "too excessive" has any precedent. Apparently alot of lawyers are going to be using this statement for their clients.

Anyway my whole point is that both of these guys both lied and perjured themselves but one was the POTUS friend and the other wasn't so the latter got screwed while the other has to spend 33 months in jail.

I just wanted Libby to serve some time and as I have said before if Bush would have pardoned him on his last day of office I would have no problem with it because that is par for the course with exiting Presidents.

I don't have any doubt that the fact that Libby was a Bush loyalist had something to do with his commutation. If nothing else, it raised the profile of his case way above that of the average pardon/commutation seeker and it allowed for a political constituency to be established behind granting it (witness the answers of most of the candidates at the Republican presidential debate when they were asked about a Libby pardon). Most likely, it has more to do with it than that though.

And I don't have a problem with you thinking Libby should have served at least part of his sentence. I consider that a very reasonable position even if I can't bring myself to share it.

But, IMO, no one will ever be able to demonstrate hypocrisy because every case will be based on different facts and those distinctions may well be the basis for a principled difference in treatment. None of the people who have ever tried to distinguish between "lying about a blowjob" and "lying about a treasonous outing of a CIA super agent" have standing to gloss over the differences between Libby and Rita and say they are the same based only on the charged crime. I'm not saying that you fall into this group, but just that many of the people who will be calling this hypocrisy do.

Logical
07-05-2007, 05:41 PM
patteeu defending the administration what a shock! The President could have pardoned or commuted the sentence and thus avoided the whole SCOTUS issue entirely. Course you ignored that possibility.

|Zach|
07-05-2007, 05:42 PM
patteeu defending the administration what a shock! The President could have pardoned or commuted the sentence and thus avoided the whole SCOTUS issue entirely. Course you ignored that possibility.
I question whether he hold him accountable for anything he does. There is nothing delusional in that.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 05:50 PM
patteeu defending the administration what a shock! The President could have pardoned or commuted the sentence and thus avoided the whole SCOTUS issue entirely. Course you ignored that possibility.

Course. ROFL

Let's see... I ignored the issue of commutation here:

Besides, he can always consider commutation or pardon for Rita. If all the facts are identical between the two cases, hypocrisy would be avoided not by arguing to overturn the conviction at the SCOTUS but by agreeing to commute the sentence.

and here:

Even if the facts were identical in Rita and Libby, and even if the WH wanted to treat both men identically, there is no reason why they would have argued to support Rita's appeal. Instead, they would commute Rita's sentence just like they did with Libby.

And as for the idea of commuting or pardoning Rita before his SCOTUS case, do you have any evidence that Rita applied for a pardon/commutation and was rejected or are you instead expecting GWB to just leap into action to right every wrong in our criminal justice system like some kind of superhero? Captain Commutation to the rescue!!!

patteeu
07-05-2007, 05:53 PM
I question whether he hold him accountable for anything he does. There is nothing delusional in that.

What do you mean by "hold him accountable?" If you mean lobby my Congressman to impeach him, you're probably right.

WoodDraw
07-05-2007, 06:01 PM
Ok, I've read the case and parts of the briefs. The purgery and obstruction of justice issues are irrelavent to the case. The SC accepted the case for review to clarify a previous decision. It address sentencing guidelines and presumption of reasonableness - two issues far more complex than we need to address here.

The Bush administration does contradict itself though. They argue that sentences falling within the guidelines should be presumed reasonable, and go on to argue that Rita's sentence was reasonable. Libby was given a sentence within the guidelines, and was denied bail based on a lack of legal evidence towards reversal. Bush then stated that he felt the sentence was unreasonable. The two decisions undeniably contradict.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 06:13 PM
Ok, I've read the case and parts of the briefs. The purgery and obstruction of justice issues are irrelavent to the case. The SC accepted the case for review to clarify a previous decision. It address sentencing guidelines and presumption of reasonableness - two issues far more complex than we need to address here.

The Bush administration does contradict itself though. They argue that sentences falling within the guidelines should be presumed reasonable, and go on to argue that Rita's sentence was reasonable. Libby was given a sentence within the guidelines, and was denied bail based on a lack of legal evidence towards reversal. Bush then stated that he felt the sentence was unreasonable. The two decisions undeniably contradict.

I don't see the contradiction between arguing that an appeals court can presume reasonableness of sentences within the guidelines in general and finding a case of unreasonableness on one particular set of facts. :shrug:

WoodDraw
07-05-2007, 06:29 PM
I don't see the contradiction between arguing that an appeals court can presume reasonableness of sentences within the guidelines in general and finding a case of unreasonableness on one particular set of facts. :shrug:

The entire case contradicts that. Libby didn't even appeal his sentence. Instead, he appealed on obscure constitutional grounds that no one saw as having a chance. The President stepped in when Libby was going to jail. Sentencing guidelines have a presumption of reasonableness when appealed to the Court of Appeals, but this case didn't even make it that far. What are the unreasonable factors here, and where did the sentencing judge fail in the addressing them. Why was this case so unlike the others that the President was forced to step in and address the failure of the judicial system?

jettio
07-05-2007, 06:32 PM
B*sh had no choice but to pardon the guy.

B*sh's only remaining suppositories are patteeu and the rest of the 20% of the voting population that are lily-livered chicken hawks with no sense of honor.

He risked losing some of that sorry crowd if he did not pardon Libby.

If one lying sorry sack of Raiduhs commutes the sentence of another lying sorry sack of Raiduhs, does it make a sound?

patteeu
07-05-2007, 06:40 PM
The entire case contradicts that. Libby didn't even appeal his sentence. Instead, he appealed on obscure constitutional grounds that no one saw as having a chance. The President stepped in when Libby was going to jail. Sentencing guidelines have a presumption of reasonableness when appealed to the Court of Appeals, but this case didn't even make it that far. What are the unreasonable factors here, and where did the sentencing judge fail in the addressing them. Why was this case so unlike the others that the President was forced to step in and address the failure of the judicial system?

You're asking me to read the mind of the President here and I can't do that. My argument is that there is no contradiction, not that the President's rationale for unreasonableness in the Libby case (whatever it is) is indisputable.

Logical
07-05-2007, 06:48 PM
Course. ROFL

Let's see... I ignored the issue of commutation here:



and here:



And as for the idea of commuting or pardoning Rita before his SCOTUS case, do you have any evidence that Rita applied for a pardon/commutation and was rejected or are you instead expecting GWB to just leap into action to right every wrong in our criminal justice system like some kind of superhero? Captain Commutation to the rescue!!!

Bullshit attempt and full of holes. Why not leap to the aide of a true soldier when they felt a need to get involved in the SCOTUS issue at all. Not like they did not know about it. Yet they jump to the aide of Scooter, do we have proof he applied for commutation?

WoodDraw
07-05-2007, 07:01 PM
You're asking me to read the mind of the President here and I can't do that. My argument is that there is no contradiction, not that the President's rationale for unreasonableness in the Libby case (whatever it is) is indisputable.

How can you argue there is no contradiction if you don't know the rational behind Bush saying this sentence was unreasonable? For these to not contradict, there has to be something that separates them. What is that 'something'?

Sam Hall
07-05-2007, 07:02 PM
.

HolmeZz
07-05-2007, 07:43 PM
You're asking me to read the mind of the President here and I can't do that.

I believe that the administration was arguing for the concept that sentencing guidelines provided a reasonable basis for sentencing even after those guidelines were no longer mandatory.

Do you have evidence that that was what the administration was arguing?

patteeu
07-05-2007, 08:01 PM
Bullshit attempt and full of holes. Why not leap to the aide of a true soldier when they felt a need to get involved in the SCOTUS issue at all. Not like they did not know about it.

I would bet that the President didn't have any personal knowledge of the Rita case (although a brief on SCOTUS cases may well have crossed his desk at one point or another) so I'm not sure where you get this. The decision about how to approach Rita v. United States case was no doubt made at a level well below the President.

Yet they jump to the aide of Scooter, do we have proof he applied for commutation?

ROFL Sometimes your Bush hatred makes you pretty dense. The fact that his sentence was commuted by the President is prima facia evidence that his lawyers requested Presidential review.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 08:04 PM
How can you argue there is no contradiction if you don't know the rational behind Bush saying this sentence was unreasonable? For these to not contradict, there has to be something that separates them. What is that 'something'?

What I mean is that there is no inherent/necessary contradiction as you and others are arguing. Whether there is, in fact, a contradiction based on the President's personal opinion of both cases (assuming he becomes aware of the Rita case at some point) is not something either of us can determine without further disclosure on the part of GWB.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 08:06 PM
Do you have evidence that that was what the administration was arguing?

Yes. I read Justice Breyer's opinion (http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/06-5754.ZS.html). Wooddraw read the briefs which is where you would find out exactly what the administration was arguing. I don't have any plan to read them at the moment, but you can if you want to.

Phobia
07-05-2007, 08:17 PM
I've always claimed to be no Bush fan yet found myself defending his policies frequently.

This is plain stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Worst move ever.

Logical
07-05-2007, 08:19 PM
...



ROFL Sometimes your Bush hatred makes you pretty dense. The fact that his sentence was commuted by the President is prima facia evidence that his lawyers requested Presidential review.I won't argue the first point because neither of us can prove our point. As to the last point how do you know for a fact that President did not intercede without being asked. I would like certifiable proof not just an assumption on your part. Remember you are saying that Rita needs to ask for a commutation and you also have no way of knowing that has not.

WoodDraw
07-05-2007, 08:45 PM
Yes. I read Justice Breyer's opinion (http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/06-5754.ZS.html). Wooddraw read the briefs which is where you would find out exactly what the administration was arguing. I don't have any plan to read them at the moment, but you can if you want to.

Yeah, you're right on this one. The government argued that the presumption of reasonableness of sentencings within the guidelines didn't violate the Booker decision (which ruled that mandatory guidelines violated the 6th amendment). There were other issues in the case surrounding the specific case of Rita too. The SC ruling stuck pretty close to the government's argument.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 08:51 PM
I won't argue the first point because neither of us can prove our point. As to the last point how do you know for a fact that President did not intercede without being asked. I would like certifiable proof not just an assumption on your part. Remember you are saying that Rita needs to ask for a commutation and you also have no way of knowing that has not.

That's weak, but I guess it's all you've got.

WoodDraw
07-05-2007, 08:51 PM
What I mean is that there is no inherent/necessary contradiction as you and others are arguing. Whether there is, in fact, a contradiction based on the President's personal opinion of both cases (assuming he becomes aware of the Rita case at some point) is not something either of us can determine without further disclosure on the part of GWB.

My hangup here is that Bush claims the sentence for Libby was unfair, when it just wasn't. Unfair personally in the way no one wants to see their friend go to jail, but not unfair legally. No case in the history of the US has been handled like this one. I don't mean that in the grandiose way it sounds, as this case is irrelavent in the bigger picture. No true harm came up if, but he still broke the law. And he got off, for no other reason than he was a part of the executive branch. I don't understand why everyone can't get behind the shame of that.

Logical
07-05-2007, 09:37 PM
That's weak, but I guess it's all you've got.
In another words you got nothing but speculation.

patteeu
07-05-2007, 09:46 PM
In another words you got nothing but speculation.

LOL, I already told you what I've got. You just made the irrational choice not to believe that the exercise of the President's commutation power is strong evidence that a request has been made. If the President himself made a statement indicating that Libby had made a request, you could just as easily convince yourself that he's lying about it and that it doesn't prove anything. So how about we stop wasting time on this foolishness of yours?

Logical
07-05-2007, 11:12 PM
LOL, I already told you what I've got. You just made the irrational choice not to believe that the exercise of the President's commutation power is strong evidence that a request has been made. If the President himself made a statement indicating that Libby had made a request, you could just as easily convince yourself that he's lying about it and that it doesn't prove anything. So how about we stop wasting time on this foolishness of yours?You are the one defending the administration with no proof. I am asking for your proof and not just your speculation.

Ugly Duck
07-05-2007, 11:25 PM
There is at least one major difference Yeah, the marine was not a high ranking official of Bushron obstructing an investigation that was zeroing in on the Vice President. That is what made all the difference.

Logical
07-05-2007, 11:53 PM
Yeah, the marine was not a high ranking official of Bushron obstructing an investigation that was zeroing in on the Vice President. That is what made all the difference.This was so obvious I just ignored it. I don't believe this is justified even if that were not the obvious issue.

listopencil
07-06-2007, 10:32 PM
So...President Bush is a flaming pile of dog shit...no surprise...nothing new here...same old story.