President Bush commuted the sentence of former aide I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby Monday, sparing him from a 2 1/2-year prison term in the CIA leak case.MORE: From the NYT:
Bush left intact a $250,000 fine and two years probation for Libby, according to a senior White House official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the decision had not been announced.
Bush's move came hours after a federal appeals panel ruled Libby could not delay his prison term in the CIA leak case.
“I respect the jury’s verdict,” Mr. Bush said. “But I have concluded that the prison sentence given to Mr. Libby is excessive. Therefore, I am commuting the portion of Mr. Libby’s sentence that required him to spend 30 months in prison.”
Like a pardon, a commutation is a form of clemency, granted to the president by the Constitution. But a pardon is an official act of forgiveness, whereas a commutation simply reduces the penalty, without making an official judgment of forgiveness.
Mr. Bush has been urged by some conservatives to grant Mr. Libby an outright pardon.
The president noted in his statement that that the decision to commute “leaves in place a harsh punishment for Mr. Libby.”
“The reputation he gained through his years of public service and professional work in the legal community is forever damaged,” Mr. Bush said. “His wife and young children have suffered immensely. He will remain on probation.”
AND: Earlier in the day, there was glee from some quarters when the Court of Appeals denied Libby's motion for release pending appeal. Firedoglake:
What this says to me is that Libby — or, as I like to call him Inmate 28301-016 — is headed to jail. Do not pass go. Do not collect anything.
is the frog marching?...
Scooter Libby, convicted felon, is going to prison.
4th of July present. Barbeque and drinks all around…
The Fitz of July?
ADDED: If you want to know what I think, click the "Libby" label below. I've got nothing new to say.