No clemency for former La. Gov. Edwards

Nov. 27, 2008 at 3:10 PM
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 27 (UPI) -- Former Louisiana Gov. Edwin Edwards remained in prison this Thanksgiving, without the hoped-for sentence commutation from U.S. President George Bush.

Edwards first petitioned the president two years ago. His supporters include former Gov. David Treen, the first Republican to govern Louisiana since Reconstruction, and other leaders of the president's party, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reported.

A Democrat, Edwards was governor for a total of 16 years. But his political career ended in disgrace when he was sentenced in 2001 to 10 years in prison for extorting bribes for casino licenses.

Many in Louisiana think prison is where Edwards belongs.

"George Bush knows this would be wrong, and if he does it, it's purely a political favor for somebody and he will do it on his last day on his way out the door, " C.B. Forgotston, a lawyer from Hammond told the Times-Picayune.

But Treen describes Edwards' sentence as "pretty harsh." He also suggested that his age, 81, should be considered.

Forgotson disagrees -- "If you're worried about going to jail for the rest of your life, maybe you should stop being corrupt when you're 40."

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