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Trump should not consider a Kilpatrick pardon

We hope President Donald Trump passes on calls that he commute the sentence of former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, convicted about seven years ago of 24 counts of using his positions as mayor and state representative to carry out a decade-long criminal racket involving extortion, bribery, conspiracy and fraud.

The Detroit News on Monday reported Compuware co-founder Pete Karmanos is lobbying the Trump administration to pardon Kilpatrick.

Karmanos is joined by state Rep. Sherry Gay-Dagnogo, a Detroit Democrat and others in maintaining that the time Kilpatrick has served to date is sufficient to his crimes.

“Are you kidding me? Twenty-eight years for less than really $500 of money from his own campaign fund that got spent, and that’s it?” Karmanos, who is Republican, asked during the weekly podcast hosted by former Detroit News reporter Charlie LeDuff.

The News reported that Kilpatrick isn’t eligible for a pardon under the Justice Department’s guidelines because he’s still serving a prison sentence. He’s also an unlikely candidate for commutation partly because such candidates have typically served at least half of their sentence, while he has served more than seven years of his 28-year sentence.

But Trump isn’t bound by the Justice Department guidelines and has been willing to bypass past practices in issuing pardons, the News reported.

As we said, we sincerely hope Trump doesn’t do this. Kilpatrick received a 28-year sentence for his crimes. He should serve a longer portion of his sentence before being considered for early release under any circumstance.

— The Mining Journal, Marquette

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