DECEMBER 02, 2008
Clinton Attorney General Janet Reno is defending Eric Holder’s push to pardon a fugitive financier and a pair of terrorists, claiming the White House was bombarded with last-minute requests and there was no time to properly investigate them all.
For the first time since the Clinton pardon scandal resurfaced, his loyal attorney general is offering some insight on what really went down. The highly controversial last-minute pardons became the focus of numerous media reports when Barack Obama picked Holder to run the Justice Department last month.
Holder was Reno’s deputy attorney under Clinton and he personally orchestrated some of the more shameful pardons, including two terrorists serving lengthy prison sentences and millionaire commodities broker Marc Rich who fled the country to escape prosecution for tax evasion, racketeering and trading with the enemy.
Outraged federal prosecutors had described Rich’s criminal indictment as the biggest tax-fraud case in the history of the United States and the pardon ignited fury at the Justice Department. Acknowledging that such criminals should be brought to justice, Holder later admitted that his public career was over for orchestrating Rich’s pardon.
This week one of the nation’s most renowned attorney generals (Reno) tries to comfort us with an outrageous explanation of Holder’s deplorable actions; the fast pace of pardon requests at the end of Clinton’s tenure made it impossible for every candidate to be thoroughly checked out. “There wasn’t much time to vet anybody,” according to Reno.
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