“I don't think it will be offensive at all when [Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is] convicted and when the death penalty is applied to him,” Obama told NBC’s Chuck Todd.Journey back to 1970:
When Todd asked Obama if he was interfering in the trial process by declaring that Mohammed will be executed, Obama, a former constitutional law professor, insisted that he wasn’t trying to dictate the result.
“What I said was, people will not be offended if that's the outcome. I'm not pre-judging, I'm not going to be in that courtroom, that's the job of prosecutors, the judge and the jury,” Obama said. “What I'm absolutely clear about is that I have complete confidence in the American people and our legal traditions and the prosecutors, the tough prosecutors from New York who specialize in terrorism."
Nixon Calls Manson Guilty, Later Withdraws Remark; Refers to Coast Murder Trial in Talk in Denver, Then Says in Washington He Didn't Mean to Prejudge Case
President Nixon asserted today that Charles Manson, a hippie cultist now on trial in California, "was guilty, directly or indirectly, of eight murders without reason."
But, faced with criticism that he had prejudged the outcome of the Manson trial, Mr. Nixon issued a statement ... saying that "the last thing I would do is prejudice the legal rights of any person, in any circumstances."
Googling, I saw that this isn't the first time someone has compared something Obama did to the old Nixon/Manson screwup. Back in July, the comparison was made after Obama said the "police acted stupidly" in arresting Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
From that July article:
Robert Dallek, a presidential historian, said in an interview that Nixon’s comments, while seemingly a gaffe, reinforced his stance in the prevailing cultural wars and seemed calculated. “He was playing to the whole idea that conservatives stand for law and order and Democrats were permissive and indulgent toward criminals,” Mr. Dallek said.So, what do you think?