Thursday, June 17, 2010

Arizona: Coverage / Commentary Re Jan Brewer's "Justice"

Click on each passage to see the full context of coverage / commentary on the case of Bill Macumber

Macumber seems to be not a double murderer but a multiple victim — a victim of unjustly rigid rules of evidence (surely the confession would have raised a reasonable doubt of his guilt); a clemency process wherein governors have more to lose politically by releasing convicts than they have to gain by showing mercy - Ronald Goldfarb, The Hill

The speculation is that Governor Brewer is putting the interests of getting reelected ahead of the interests of justice. By refusing to release Macumber, she manages to appear tough on crime. For months, Brewer has been wrongfully pilloried for enforcing federal immigration laws in Arizona. It hurts to see the victim of such injustice perpetuate an injustice in her capacity as governor. I hope she will reconsider her decision, and let William Macumber spend his ailing twilight years as a free man. There is still time to do the right thing. I hope Governor Brewer will free William Macumber while there is still time. - Rudy Stettner, IndyPosted

Another reason to stay out of Arizona - Thomas Brandstrader, Chicago Criminal Defense

"It's a very rare thing for them to recommend clemency, and it's even more rare, it's freakishly rare for them to recommend clemency on the grounds of innocence," says Rock Valley College Professor and clemency expert P.S. Ruckman, Jr. He thinks the governor owes the Macumber family an explanation for her denial. - WREX Television, Rockford, IL.

Unless a state governor can honestly conclude with near certainty that a clemency board is wrong, it is unethical—reckless, unfair, cruel, cowardly and irresponsible not to defer to its recommendation. Maybe Brewer has a legitimate reason for her decision in the Macumber case, but if she does, she has an obligation to Ronald Kempfert, the clemency board and the public to explain what it is. - Jack Marshall, Ethics Alarm

Adam Liptak has a story in today’s New York Times about William Macumber, an Arizona man who’s been in prison for 35 years for a double homicide he likely did not commit, that has to be read to be believed.- Greg Marx, Columbia Journalism Review

If Accidental Governor Jan Brewer’s decision to sign the draconian anti-immigration SB1070 didn’t convince you that she won’t hesitate to trample on anyone who gets in her way of wining this year’s gubernatorial contest, this will.- StateHouseRock

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