On Face the Nation two senators argued over the commutation of Scooter Libby's sentence (among other topics). Utah's Orrin Hatch laid out the Republican case for the president's intervention, arguing that George W. Bush's actions were not nearly as egregious as Bill Clinton's pardons.
"I think both President Clinton and President Bush had an absolute right to grant pardons if they wanted to constitutionally. The only difference between the Clinton and the Bush pardons is in the case of the FALM, the Puerto Rican terrorists, case of Rich and Pinkus Green. In the case of the two, who paid $200,000 to Hugh Rodham, these--two of them were fugitives from justice, 16 of them were terrorists, and the other two, it seemed to me, may have bribed their way through."
Sen. Chuck Schumer explained why so many Democrats are bothered by the president's decision, and hinted that the Senate Judiciary Committee might call Patrick Fitzgerald for testimony about the case and the commutation.
"I've spoken to Senator Leahy about this, [and what] we're thinking of doing is calling Patrick Fitzgerald, the prosecutor, before us. You know, he's not allowed to talk about what happened before the grand jury, but he did interview the president and the vice president not before a grand jury, and he might have some very interesting things to say. He issued a rare statement after the commutation that was very harsh in condemning it, and with good reason. The average guidelines, the Justice Department guidelines in these types of situations call for 30 to 37 months in prison. That's what Libby got, and so there are thousands and thousands of people who committed the same crime who are sitting in jail, and Scooter Libby is not. And that's just not fair. That's not equal justice before the law."
On http://www.foxnews.com/fns/ target=_blank>Fox News Sunday, Bill Kristol and Juan Williams debated the benefit of Bill Clinton attaching himself to his wife's primary campaign. According to Kristol,
"I would say that if I had a choice, just in terms of who I would like to think about occupying the White House for the next four years, I'd kind of prefer Barack and Michelle Obama to Bill and Hillary Clinton.â€¦ If you're a Democrat and you want change do you really want the Clinton's coming back with all the questions and baggage that raises?"
"People are concerned about Hillary as a polarizing figure; someone who energizes the Republicans in a way that nobody else on the Democratic side might. Given that the political landscape at the moment favors the Democrats overwhelmingly, the argument might be, 'Why nominate Hillary?' She is the one Democrat who could actually lose. If Bill Clinton is standing there, Bill Clinton, suddenly people say 'well, they're experienced, Bill Clinton is a part of this, we have a positive feeling about Clinton.' It might actually give her a boost."
This Week took a look at two fringe candidates: Rep. Ron Paul on the Republican side, and Democratic long shot Mike Gravel. When asked about his initial objection to the Iraq war, and his desire to pull the troops out the country as rapidly as possible, Paul said,
"Think of Vietnam: It worked out much better than anybody predicted. We're achieving with Vietnam what the Founders advised us to achieve with everybody: friendship, and trade. Not a belligerent attitude of forcing our wishes on other people."
In any just political universe, a statement like this would end Paul's campaign. Sure, the precipitous American withdrawal from Vietnam led to tens of thousands of boat people risking death on the high seas in order to avoid the reeducation camps in which hundreds of thousands more suffered. And yeah, more than a million people were killed in Cambodia when the Khmer Rouge took over. But the sneaker trade is booming now...