Congresswoman Margolies-Mezvinsky Calls for Equal Justice for Pollard

Congress of the United States

House of Representatives
Washington DC 20515-3813

Rep Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky
13th District, Pennsylvania

August 1, 1993

President Bill Clinton
The White House
Washington DC

Dear Mr. President,

I was pleased during your presidential campaign when you pledged to turn your attention to the controversy surrounding the disproportionate prison sentence imposed upon Jonathan Pollard.

Clearly, espionage of any kind, whether to benefit an enemy or an ally, cannot be tolerated. It is fair and just for Jonathan Pollard to receive the appropriate punishment, neither too lenient nor too severe. Based upon a review a of similar crimes and sentences imposed, however, Jonathan Pollard' a sentence of life imprisonment is not commensurate with his crime.

Our system of criminal jurisprudence is rooted, in part, upon the belief that similar crimes receive similar punishment: a belief which spawned the development of mandatory minimum sentencing and sentencing guidelines in this country. The predictability of punishment serves not only as a deterrent but as a broad guarantee of fairness in sentencing.

The Pollard case stands in striking contrast to both the principles of predictable sentencing and fundamental fairness. His sentence in harsher than sentences meted out to individuals convicted of spying for enemies, and it stands as the harshest sentence in the history of our nation for the crime of spying for an ally.

As you are fully aware, the exceptional circumstances in the Pollard case warrant attention. It is my hope that you are soon able to review the Pollard case and take appropriate action.

Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky
Member of Congress

See Also: