The Arizona Republic publishes an editorial, "Our View: Blame Gov. Brewer for this epic clemency fail."
Jesse Hernandez, who recently resigned as executive director and chairman of the Arizona Board of Executive Clemency, obviously is not the first political appointee to arrive at an important government post ill-prepared and unqualified.
Usually, the beneficiaries of these opportunities have the good sense to not call attention to their shortcomings, lean heavily on the expertise of staff and ride the gravy train to its lucrative end.
If the appointment had been to some far, wee corner of the political feather-bedder’s universe, that would have been one thing. But the clemency board is a highly visible institution, made more visible by Brewer herself.
Hernandez was appointed last year when Brewer suddenly replaced three of the five clemency board members, apparently because they were recommending too much clemency on behalf of inmates.
As The Republic’s Bob Ortega reported in his series in May on Arizona’s prison system, Brewer is the first Arizona governor in 34 years not to issue a single pardon. She has denied each of the clemency board’s 13 recommendations.
But simply saying no wasn’t enough. Brewer needed a clemency board that was just as averse to clemency as she was. Enter Hernandez, whose political connections in the Republican Party suggest a viewpoint on crime and clemency that would mirror the governor’s.
"Ariz court grants request for execution warrant," is the Associated Press report, via KSAZ-TV.
The Arizona Supreme Court has granted state prosecutors' request for an execution warrant for one death row inmate but delayed action on another.
The court without comment Tuesday ordered the state Department of Corrections to schedule the execution of 43-year-old Robert Glen Jones.
The court says it's delaying consideration of a separate request for an execution warrant for 70-year-old Edward Schad until Sept. 3.
Schad was sentenced to death for the 1978 murder of a Bisbee man.
Lawyers for both men had asked the Supreme Court to delay issuing warrants until vacancies on the state Board of Executive Clemency are filled so Jones and Schad can get fair hearings.