Friday, January 16, 2015

Illinois: Quinn, No Barbour

In recent days, there has been a tendency to use the phrase "last-minute" in relation to former Gov Pat Quinn's use of the pardon power. But Quinn was no Johnny-come-lately with respect to his constitutional duty to participate in the State's system of separation of powers and checks and balances. Quinn came into office promising to attempt to address Rod Blagojevich's inexcusable backlog, and the effort that followed was steady, and gallant.

Recent reports suggest Quinn's grants amounted to about 1,700. We went through every story that appeared in this blog (by simply typing "Quinn" in the search box on the top left corner of the screen) and came up with a figure slightly higher than that - just over 50 more. We will investigate the difference and report back on what we learn.

Regardless, Quinn was certainly no Haley Barbour, Barbour sat on his hands his entire term, He did nothing. Then, just before he left, he dumped a pile of pardons, without warning, without the announcement of any concern that pardons were important. No principle preceded his stunt. It was all as if he did it because ... he could. 

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