Dan Burton, kindly pipe down and let the professionals handle this

Dear Rep. Burton:

Before we begin, I would like to assure you that I’m not writing this because you are a hypocritical fuckwad. That, I think, is obvious, and does not bear repeating. No, I want to talk to you about your “investigation” of Clinton’s pardons.

Now, I like Clinton, and I voted for him twice. However, if Mr. Clinton or anyone else committed any crimes while securing Marc Rich or anyone else’s pardons, I think they should go to jail. And you, sir, if you weren’t so blinded by spluttering rage, would recognize that your “investigation” will likely make that impossible. You are sacrificing any chance of criminal prosecution in order to make your petty political points and extract your last pound of flesh from Clinton. Do you not see that this is, um, a bad idea, or can’t you see anything cause of all the shit in your eyes?

Since your syncophants won’t tell you the truth, let me point out a few things:

  1. Any facts you accidently uncover during your hearings will be broadcast across the country. Any half-way competent defense attorney will scream that you tainted the jury pool if anyone involved ever goes to trial;

  2. In case you don’t get the concept, if you offer people (like Denise Rich) immunity, they are, um, immune from prosecution. Maybe your head was up your ass when Ollie North was freed on appeal. (Admittedly, Ollie’s a bad example. To you, he’s an American hero. To me, he’s a felon. Po-tay-to, Po-taaah-to.)

So, Dan, sit back and let the pros handle this. Now that the evil Democrats aren’t in power, the FBI won’t try to cover this up. :rolleyes: I realize that this means that we, the American people, will be deprived of seeing your screwed-up, half-insane visage on our TV screens, but, trust me, we are willing to make that sacrifice.



Sua - have you also noticed how the term “sore winners” has begun to be bandied about?


Yes, in all the moral outrage etc. over that particular pardon, few seemed to note that by pardoning the guy so he’d come home, it opened the door for the collection of the taxes etc? naaaah. let’s just still be outraged at the guy sitting in Europe, it’s far more practical.


I think you may be off track in this. I don’t think there is any possiblity that Clinton has committed a crime in this matter. AFAIK, the presidential power to grant pardons is absolute, and he can grant them for any reason. The purpose of congressional hearings in general is to uncover the truth, both on behalf of the American people, and for possible future laws. I don’t know of any reason why this should be inapropriate here.

This isn’t the way it works. For example, every Senator has the absolute constitutional power to introduce a bill. However, if you bribe a Senator to introduce a particular bill, you and the Senator have committed a crime.
Same goes for pardon powers. Even though the pardon power is absolute, if Clinton was bribed to exercise that power, he committed a crime by accepting the bribe. And, of course, anyone who bribed Clinton (er, I mean, made “campaign contributions”) to exercise his absolute power to pardon, they committed a crime, too.

Denise Rich certainly thinks it’s possible that a crime may have occurred - she took the 5th.


Or, she could have been one of the many Americans who watched in horror at the Starr escapades and decided, ‘well, no matter what I did, they’re going to try and make it appear as if I broke a law, so I won’t give them anything to work with’.
??? maybe???


  1. Are you sure what you write is true?

  2. Even if it is illegal to take an outright quid pro quo, does this mean that an obvious arrangement like this could be prosecuted even if had not been spelled out directly? To use your example, with all the crying aboput special interest money influencing congressional votes, do you think a congressman can be investigated and prosecuted for voting in favor of his contributor’s bill?

Quite possibly true. I’ll amend to say that she “certainly thinks that a criminal prosecution may arise out of this business.”


It’s a fine line, and it all comes down to how specific the arrangement is. Contributions given so that the congressperson is amenable to you and your POV’s, and will grant you access to present your POV’s is legal; contributions that are given with the express or implied expectation that, because of the contribution, the congressperson will vote your way on a particular bill is bribery.
That fine line will apply to Clinton as well. If Denise Rich gave contributions to gain access, there is no crime. If she gave contributions to secure the pardon, there is.

Which one it is is what a criminal investigation, not Burton blowing hard on TV, may be able to uncover.


I always write what I’m sure is true; I leave it up to you to determine the credibility of the radio voices I receive through my fillings. :smiley:


That’s a relief - for a moment there I thought we’d be on opposite sides, and I wouldn’t want that to happen!


I don’t think there is any serious chance that there will be a criminal investigation (or that any of my liberal friends will look too kindly on one :wink: ). So there’s not much in the claim that Burton is interfering with one. (In fact, it is also extremely unlikely that the arangement was blatent enough to justify one. But it is sleazy nonetheless). In absence of this, he is performing a valuable service, providing the country with information that they might not know otherwise.

But Izzy, if there is no criminal conduct, what’s to investigate? That Clinton pardoned people that some people think shouldn’t have been pardoned?

If that’s the problem, why weren’t there Congressional hearings when Ford pardoned Nixon? When Bush pardoned the Iran-Contra conspirators? Damn straight those were controversial.

If there wasn’t criminal behavior by Clinton or others here, then Burton is applying a different standard to him than was applied to those (Republican) ex-Presidents.

So, there are two options:

  1. Something criminal happened here and, as has so often happened, the Congressional hearings will damage or eliminate chances to have a criminal prosecution; or
  2. Nothing criminal happened here, and Burton, still smarting that Clinton wasn’t impeached, has decided to take one last stab at Clinton for Clinton’s daring to exercise his constitutional perogatives.

Personally, I think #1 applies, but either way, Burton should butt out.


Um, well, according to the reports I’ve read, Rich is now an Israeli citizen, and has contributed heavily to Israeli charities (which is part of the reason the Israeli government was lobbying to have Rich pardoned). So being pardoned doesn’t allow him to come back to the US; but it does allow him to go to Israel, where he won’t be arrested and sent to the US. But I doubt there’s much hope he’ll come back to the US and pay taxes.
As for the entire pardon- I don’t believe Rich should have been pardoned. It wouldn’t surprise me that Clinton weighed heavily the amount of campaign and presidential library contributions Rich’s wife had given in deciding whether to grant the pardon. But I don’t think Burton’s committee will do much more than try to make some political hay out of the whole imbraglio. So I guess I agree with Sua, but I’m much more tepid about it because I don’t think Burton’s adding much to the whirlwind that the media feeding frenzy has already created.

It is morally and ethically wrong to pardon undeserving people based on the fact that they have helped you out personally and politically, even if not a crime.

Then let Burton schedule the Clinton hearings to commence as soon as he has completed the hearing into G H W Bush’s pardon of the Contra-gate bunch that were under criminal investigation when he scotched that deal.

Izzy. I could have sworn that Congress was the legislative branch of our government, as in laws. If they’ve taken on the obligation to review the moral and ethical considerations of actions, they’re gonna have to schedule a whole lot more time for their activities, and frankly, they should start closer to home (ie members of Congress first, thank you). If they’re only interested in the morality and ethics of one person, then there’s additional problems.

(and I reiterate the comments about checking into Papa Bush, Ford etc’s pardons if they’re really concerned about inappropriate pardons)

It was even worse than that, tomndebb. There was informed speculation that part of Bush’s motive for issuing the pardons was that, had the criminal prosecutions proceeded, they (particularly Cap Weinberger) would have spilled the beans on Bush’s involvement in Iran-Contra. If that happened, Bush ran the risk of going to jail.
Compared to that (admittedly unproven) motive, anything Clinton is alleged to have done is penny ante.

Yet again, no one in Congress thought that it was appropriate to start hearings then, even though the Dems controlled the House at the time.


Suasponte, it seems there is NOTHING Clinton could do which would lower your opinion of him. Never mind the fact the all too convincing evidence of his complete personal corruption, moral, financial and philosophical.

Your blinders are all too apparent - and I’m just wondering how you will defend what is apparently the greatest act of prostitution which has been seen in many years - the selling of a pardon to Marc Rich.

Have you read the fucking thread, newbie? That’s what we do here. We read, then we rant.

Sua has clearly expressed a desire to have Clinton undergo a trial for his actions, in order to determine if they were illegal. This would mean that he would PAY for his actions, if, indeed, they were illegal.

But, apparently, your head is so far up your fucking ass that you didn’t read ANYTHING and just ranted based on the first 5 words of the thread title. Good for you.

Welcome to the boards, btw.

Sorry…just noticed your join date. Replace every reference to “newbie” on my last post with “asshole.”

Note: This doesn’t reflect on my opinions of newbies in general, but rather this one guy.