Papal connivance with the commutation of Oscar Lopez-Rivera’s sentence was not spontaneous. Francis’ mercy-mongering on his behalf lasted more than a year.
‘The fact is that John Adams and Benjamin Franklin have nothing in common with Oscar Lopez Rivera. . . He is only free because of his celebrity friends who have the president’s ear.’
The president’s action carries the same unavoidable whiff of playing identity politics with a key voting bloc of the Democratic Party.