Friday, December 17, 2010

Let Ryan Go Home?

Mary Mitchell of the Chicago Sun Times is calling on President Obama to let former Illinois Governor George Ryan (R) "go home," even though - in her mind - he "obviously" does not "deserve clemency." Ryan was convicted of racketeering, fraud and lying under oath and given a six and a half year prison sentence. She notes that Ryan's wife is "pleading with Obama to release her husband so that they can be together before she succumbs to lung cancer."

Mitchell finds it ironic that - so far - the request is being ignored, as Ryan "became nationally known for emptying death row and putting a moratorium on the death sentence in Illinois." Perhaps Richard Nixon had the same thing in mind when he set a record for the highest number of individual pardons granted in a single day and then broke his own record!

Regardless, Mitchell says Obama is "following George W. Bush’s play book" when it comes to pardons. In addition to Ryan, who has done "too much for Illinois" to remain in prison, she feels Obama should feel "compelled to open the prison doors" to "thousands upon thousands of people" who were "locked up under mandatory sentencing drug laws." See complete editorial here.

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