The Corner

Re: Huckabee and Dumond

So Huckabee’s defense is that Bill Clinton (pardoner extraordinaire) and another Democrat (and now convicted felon Jim Guy Tucker) also thought the life-plus sentence for a 35 year-old-man who kidnapped and raped a 17-year-old girl was too severe?  Yeah, that oughta fly …

Byron reports that that the Clinton/Tucker angle is, according to Huckabee, the important aspect of the story that ABC omitted.  I don’t contend that it’s trivial — though, as suggested above, I don’t really think it helps Huckabee.  But after reading the story, it seems to me the truly significant point being given short shrift is that the castration of Dumond happened before the the trial and, of course, the sentence.  It’s not like the guy got a life sentence, then got maimed in prison, and then Huckabee et al said, “Well, the castration was not foreseen when the court imposed the sentence, so Dumond rates our sympathy and a break.” 

No, here the judge who imposed sentence had an opportunity to weigh any mitigating force the castration might have in Dumond’s favor.  I have no way of knowing whether the jurors learned about the castration before they convicted Dumond at trial, but the judge certainly knew about it before imposing the life sentence — obviously concluding, based on everything presented to the court, that Dumond was a vicious criminal who was very likely to do something vicious again if released. 

Huckabee, Clinton and Tucker did not give a break to a guy who had something terrible happen to him while he was serving a long sentence; they second-guessed the court and the jury who heard the case — and who obviously knew better.  It’s not enough for Huckabee to say Clinton and Tucker agreed with him; he needs to explain why he figured the judge, who was most familiar with Dumond, had it wrong.

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