When Mike Huckabee, a former Southern Baptist minister then serving as governor of Arkansas, granted clemency to Maurice Clemmons nine years ago, he cited his age: Mr. Clemmons was 16 when he began the crime spree for which he was sentenced to more than 100 years in prison.
Now, Mr. Clemmons is being sought as the suspect in the killing of four uniformed police officers, execution-style, on Sunday as they sat in a coffee shop near Tacoma, Wash., writing reports.
Mr. Huckabee, now a Fox News talk-show host, has been leading the pack of possible Republican contenders for president in 2012. But the killings of the police officers is focusing renewed attention on his long-contentious record of pardoning convicts or commuting their sentences.
Do you remember Willie Horton? He was the rope they used to hang Michael Dukakis.
The people who will be deciding the Republican nominee for president next time around aren’t exactly the forgive-and-forget types, either.
Update: There is an interesting post at Mercury Rising about Mike Huckabee and pardons and clemency. It seems that appearing to adhere to an evangelical brand of Christianity had something to do with whether you got it or not.