19 January 2009
The New York Times published an article today on President Bush's last use of his authority to commute and pardon, by reducing the sentences of two border agents convicted of shooting an unarmed and fleeing drug dealer. The dealer apparently had 743 pounds of marijuana, and the agents shot him while he was 'running away.' It's true that they shot an unarmed man who was fleeing, and that there was no imminent danger to themselves or fellow agents. It's also true that the long-term effect was to protect the American public, and to keep our borders secure. Even Sen. Feinstein seemed to troubled by the continued prosecution of these agents. I think it's an appropriate use of his authority to pardon. It's surely a better use of that authority than the pardon of Mark Rich.