Wednesday, July 4, 2007

new video -- on the president's decision to commute libby's sentence -- "from their own mouths. . ."

it took me a bit to distill
down the manifold possibilities for
a reaction video -- and, i've plainly
left a lot of good snark, and irony,
on the cutting-room floor, here,
but what remains is duly outrageous. . .
[because most of it is from bush's
own, and his father's own mouths. . .
bonus -- it is only 2:12 long.]

while the remarks of john dean -- the
lone lawyer in the nixon white house with
scruples -- are cogently dramatic, i think
the president's own father best puts this
in perspective. or perhaps, the president's
own broken promise, and hollow rhetoric, does.

one thing is certain -- as sen. patrick
leahy says, toward the end of the video -- "in
america, no man is above the law
. . ."

it may take a while, but both mr. bush,
and mr. cheney, will see that they are
not above the law. libby may think he
is tonight, but that may soon change, as
well. . . it seems, in his haste to bury this
over the long fourth of july weekend, mr.
bush did not consult any real lawyers about
the ramifications of his commuting a sentence
that mr. libby has yet to begin serving -- and
imposing supervised release, instead.

in order to be eligible for release, mr. libby
must, by statute, have at least begun to serve
his sentence. that he has not done. and the language
of 18 USC § 3583(a), as judge walton has duly
noted, is clear -- mr. libby must serve some
of his sentence, before being eligible for any
supervised release. the positions of the
parties are due in to judge walton on monday
july 9, 2007. that will be an interesting
morning, as judge walton has encouraged
counsel to seek the views of the white
house on this matter -- i mean the president
made this mess -- let him clean it all
up, seems a fair reading of judge walton's
footnote, of today. . .

so, i guess, like many criminals, this
gang doesn't seem to have any of the sharper
pencils in its pack. the guys seem incapable of
shooting anything straight (save, of course,
mr. cheney's lawyer -- in the face -- but
cheney had the advantage of a scatter-gun, that day). . .

or, as prosecutors often say of "organized"
crime -- it often isn't.all.that."organized". . .


Uppity Gal said...

Ah ha! you DID come up with a legal argument and angle of pursuit!
Nicely done.

Happy Fourth of July!
here's to true Patriots everywhere
these truly are the times that try men's souls...

nolo said...

thanks so much uppity --

but to be honest, it was judge
walton's idea
-- i just re-
peated it, with some context. . .

i did note that CHS at firedoglake,
a fine lawyer, and former prosecutor,
used almost the same words as i did, offering "Shorter Judge Walton: clean up your own damned mess, George, because I’m not covering for you. . ." -- so that feels good.

all of that said, j. at talkleft
points out that scooter gets credit
for the day he was booked into the
prison system, so he techincally
has served one day. . .

she has to be right; she's an able
defense lawyer, and i bet that will
be lawrence robbins' position on
monday -- that scoots has served
a part of his sentence -- one day(!),
so he is eligible for 18 USC 3583(a)
early release. . .

now there are several making suggestions
that judge walton is allowed, by
statute to impose conditions, like
nights and weekends in jail -- but
i sense those are non-starters be-
cause they pretty plainly conflict
with the intent the president's plenary
commutation power evinced -- and he
said "no jail."

Appellate criminal law whiz Peter Goldberger has thouts on that over
at talkleft. . .

ahh, drats. thanks for noticing, though!

have a happy long weekend!