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Upon hearing of George W. Bush's pardoning of Issac Toussie on Tuesday, then revoking that pardon on Wednesday...my reaction was: "It figures, this guy simply can't do anything right...not even issuing pardons." The gang that couldn't shoot straight...ever. But now, after doing some reading, it seems that the Toussie pardon/non-pardon is just more of the same old political machinations that have dominated the last 8 years.
Briefly, Issac Toussie pled....
guilty in 2001 to using false documents to have mortgages insured by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and in 2002 to mail fraud, admitting that he had persuaded officials in Suffolk County to overpay for land.
The White House said Thursday that when Mr. Bush granted Isaac Toussie, 37, a pardon earlier this week, the president and his advisers were unaware that the elder Mr. Toussie (Robert Toussie) had recently donated $30,800 to Republicans. Mr. Bush took the extraordinary step of rescinding the pardon on Wednesday after reports about the political contributions.
While a president has unfettered authority to grant a pardon for any reason he wishes, the suggestion of a linkage to political donations has proved controversial in the past. The most notorious case in recent years was President Bill Clinton’s 2001 pardon of the fugitive financier Marc Rich, whose ex-wife had donated $450,000 to the Clinton presidential library. Link
Okay, so Bush didn't want to be accused of doing something similar to what Bill Clinton did, that is, pardon someone who has a "linkage to political donations." It would appear, on the surface, that Bush was trying to avoid any "pay to play" accusations as he left the White House. Perhaps after almost eight years of corruption, criminality and incompetence the Bushies had grown a conscience.
Sadly, no....there's more to the story.
Eric Holder, Obama's nominee for Attorney General, was instrumental in Bill Clinton's pardon of Marc Rich in 2001. Holder's confirmation hearings are coming up in a couple of weeks before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Committee member, Arlen Specter (R-PA), has sought to delay those hearings.
But here's what the Republicans are really up to....
ROVE: He (Holder) was deeply involved as the Deputy Attorney General in the controversial pardon of Marc Rich. … I think it’s going to be clearly examined, if for no other reason that people want to lay down markers that that kind of behavior is inappropriate. … But again, there will be some attention paid to this. Link
"That kind of behaviour is inappropriate"
See....how could Republicans bash away at Holder for the sake of political point making, trying to "dirty" Obama in the process.....if their Dear Lame-Duck Leader has just pardoned a guy whose father's "behaviour" in donating to the Republican Party has the appearance of being "inappropriate?"
So....a pardon one day was followed by a pardon-me-not the next day.
Early on in 2001, Bush appointee to the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives. John DiIulio, said this about the Bush White House...
"There is no precedent in any modern White House for what is going on in this one: a complete lack of a policy apparatus," says DiIulio. "What you’ve got is everything—and I mean everything—being run by the political arm. It’s the reign of the Mayberry Machiavellis."
"I heard many, many staff discussions but not three meaningful, substantive policy discussions," he writes. "There were no actual policy white papers on domestic issues. There were, truth be told, only a couple of people in the West Wing who worried at all about policy substance and analysis, Link
And so it is at the end of the Bush regime. Everything is political, all decisions based on political considerations. No policy or ethical concerns mattered at the beginning of Bush, none at the end, either.
It would seem like it would be pretty difficult to f*ck up a pardon...but the pardoning and then pardoning not of Issac Toussie....proves that the Mayberry Machiavellis, only interested in perception from the beginning....never changed one whit in eight years.