DATE=2-17-01 TITLE=IN THE NEWS #468 - Clinton Pardons BYLINE=George Grow
(start at ) 1'07''This is the VOA Special English program, IN THE NEWS. American(1) officials have begun investigating some of (2)former President Clinton's last acts in office. The (3)Federal(4) Bureau of Investigation and the Justice Department are studying Mister Clinton's decision to (5)pardon businessman Marc Rich. They want to know if friends of Mister Rich tried to buy the pardon.
(6)Congressional committees have begun their own investigations of several of Mister Clinton's pardons. Two committees are looking at the money given to the Democratic Party by Mister Rich's former wife. Reports say Denise Rich has given about one-million dollars to (7)Democratic candidates and causes in recent years. She also gave four-hundred-fifty-thousand dollars for a project to build a library to hold Mister Clinton's presidential papers.
The former President (8)denies any wrongdoing. Mister Clinton says he approved the pardon based on what he thought was right.
Marc Rich (9)fled the country in Nineteen-Eighty-Three to avoid arrest by federal officials. He has lived in Switzerland ever since. Mister Rich was charged with cheating and failing to pay more than forty-eight-million dollars in taxes. He also was charged with taking part in (10)illegal oil deals with Iran. The Presidential pardon means he cannot be tried on any of these charges.
Presidential pardons have been part of American history since the country was established. The United States Constitution gives Presidents the right to pardon people for crimes or possible wrongdoing.
In Seventeen-Ninety-Five, for example, President George Washington pardoned two leaders of what was called the Whiskey Rebellion. They had led a (11)campaign by grain farmers who violently opposed a federal tax on whiskey products.
Perhaps the most famous pardon took place in Nineteen-Seventy-Four when President Gerald Ford pardoned former President Richard Nixon. (12)Mister Nixon had (13)resigned from office after Congress threatened legal action against him.
Some historians say President Ford may have lost the presidential election of Nineteen-Seventy-Six because of the Nixon pardon. But they say the act helped to ease what was a tense American political situation.
In his last several days in office, Mister Clinton gave pardons to about one-hundred forty people. Many people are questioning why some of the pardons were given. Congress or the courts cannot change a legal pardon.
Now, some members of Congress are suggesting the need for a constitutional (14)amendment to restrain a President's right to offer pardons. Many other lawmakers and legal experts say it would be a mistake to try to limit the pardon power of the President.
This VOA Special English program, IN THE NEWS, was written by George Grow.
(1) official[ E5fiFEl ]n.官员, 公务员adj.职务上的, 公务的, 官方的, 正式的
(2) former[ 5fC:mE ]adj.从前的, 以前的n.形成者, 创造者, 模型, 样板
(3) federal[ 5fedErEl ]adj.联邦的, 联合的,同盟的n.(南北战争期)北部联邦同盟盟 员
(4) bureau[ bjuE5rEu, 5bjuErEu ]n.办公桌, 衣柜<美>局, 办公署
(5) pardon[ 5pB:dn ]vt.原谅, 宽恕n.原谅, 宽恕
(6) congressional[ kEn5^reFE nEl ]adj.会议的, 大会的, 国会的
(7) democratic[ 7demE5krAtik ]adj.民主的, 民主主义的, 民主政体的, 平民的
(8) deny[ di5nai ]v.否认, 拒绝
(9) fled[ fled ]vbl.flee的过去式及过去分词
(10) illegal[ i5li:^El ] adj.违法的, 不合规定的
(11) campaign[ kAm5pein ]n.[军]战役, (政治或商业性)活动, 竞选运动vi.参加活 动, 从事活动, 作战
(12) mister[ 5mistE ]n.先生
(13) resigned[ ri5zaind ]adj.顺从的, 听天由命的
(14) amendment[ E5mendmEnt ]n.改善, 改正