Letter: Pardon me, numbers wrong


Mr. Tester stated that President Obama pardoned more than 1,900 while in office. From the numbers I found, that is not correct. That number is a combination of pardons (200 plux) and commutations (1,700 plus). The definition of a pardon is to forgive an offense (as if it never happened). The definition of a commutation is a reduction (not an elimination) of a sentence, such as changing a death sentence to life imprisonment or reducing a 50-year sentence to 30 years.

He attributed 26 pardons to President Trump, which is correct from the numbers I’ve seen. President Trump also issued 11 commutations.

Of those pardons issued by President Obama, none that I found were for people who could possibly give damning testimony against him. That is not the case for President Trump’s pardons. Many of his were to release his cronies from the legally imposed sentences, possibly in return for not implicating him.

I would ask that Mr. Tester check his definitions next time.

Susan Walters, Lima

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