Monday, April 1, 2019

The Bush Pardons: Why He Threw the 1992 Election to Clinton

From America's Stolen Narrative: From Washington and Madison to Nixon, Reagan and the Bushes to Obama

"[Attorney James] Brosnahan[, who had been tapped by Iran-Contra special counsel Lawrence Walsh to be the lead prosecutor in the trial of former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger, which had been scheduled to start January 5, 1993] said, 'It was all so transparent that I was disappointed that more people didn't pick up on the fact that all they were trying to do was obstruct the trial of Caspar Weinberger.  I'm talking about obstruction of justice.  The statute, I took it out of the book and made a Xerox copy out of it and stuck it up on my wall.  ...  [Walsh] was obstructed starting in '86 and [Bush's Christmas Eve '92] pardon was the final coup de grace.'

"According to Brosnahan, Bush's pardons were admired by some, ignored by many, and seen as a threat to our democratic form of government by a number, of which I am one.  ...  And that's the only way they could get rid of [Walsh].  They couldn't have a trial.  They couldn't allow witnesses to be asked where they were, what they heard.  They couldn't have Weinberger's notes out in public because it said that the President [Ronald Reagan] approved all of this'" (Parry 146-147).

"'The cross-examination of Caspar Weinberger was going to be an event,' Brosnahan told me.  'The thing about cross-examination in a trial is that there's no place to hide.  The political bullshit is over.  There's only the question where were you?  You're in charge of the missiles, what did you hear?  What did te President say?  What about this document?  What about your notes?  What about your testimony?'

"Brosnahan asked me, Do you understand why there was a pardon?' He then answered his own question, 'There was a pardon because an awful lot of people wanted this to go away'" (Parry 148).

"Walsh also understood how self-serving Bush's pardons had been because Bush was, in effect, ensuring that the scandal would not reach him.  The Iran-Contra pardons may have represented the first time in U.S. history when a sitting president used his extraordinary pardoning power to stop an unvestigation into which he was a potential defendant" (Parry 155).

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