In fareness to George W. it is important to show that most presidents grant presidential pardons as given their right by Article 2, Section 2 of the United States Constitution.
President George W. granted presidential pardons to 189 people who served their entire sentence and commuted in addition the sentences of 11 persons. This president has never pardoned a person who hasn't already served out his sentence. However, he has pardoned a far less number of people than other presidents. Here is a list of presidential pardons issued by some recent presidents.
George W. Bush - 189
Bill Clinton - 457
George H.W.Bush- 77
Ronald Reagan - 406
Jimmy Carter - 563
Harry S. Truman- 2,031
George Bush never granted a pardon to anyone who hasn't served his full time. He has cleared names of people who committed minor offenses for the most part and who have served their sentences long time ago.
However, the same cannot be said for a past president, who pardoned his predecessor, Richard Nixon, in the WaterGate scandal. The 40th President of the United States, Gerald Ford announced President Nixon's pardon on television. His decision to pardon President Nixon all but ended his chances for re-election in 1976. But he did manage to win the Republican nomination for President but lost to Jimmy Carter. Nixon was the only President in U.S. history to resign in office, because it was unlikely that he would survive a full impeachment vote in Congress. Because of his pardon, President Nixon did not have to go on trial for his WaterGate crimes and because of no trial, there was no jail time.
The following is the text from President Gerald Ford's television announcment, pardoning Richard Nixon...
"Now therefore I, Gerald R. Ford, President of the United States, pursuent to the pardon power conferred upon me by Article 2, Section 2 of the Constitution, have granted, and by these presence do grant a full, free and absolute pardon onto Richard Nixon, for all offenses against the United States, which he, Richard Nixon, has committed, or may have committed, or taken part in during the period from July 20, 1969 through August 9, 1974"
Now the kicker.... Did you know that President Nixon could have pardoned himself, and then left office? How crazy is that!!!!! With laws like this, there may always be crooks in Washington.
Even as serious as President Nixon's crimes were, he never was convicted, and never served one day in jail. But what President Nixon did was to write books and had TV interviews where he commented on WaterGate and his international politics while being President. History is now being played all over gain with George W. talking and taking interviews for his most recent publication called "Decision Points" that many claim should be called 'Deception Points'.
Seeing that George W. did not pardon Gordon Liddy of his crimes in Washington, as he did not serve any sentence for his crime, do you think that if he were put in Gerold Ford's shoes, would he had pardoned Nixon? I truly think that he would have, but another side of me thinks that maybe he wouldn't, because if he did, he would have suffered the same fate at Gerald Ford, to most likely loose re-election because of the pardon he may have granted. People may not know, but George W. denied clemency of 9,200 individuals.
Do you think that President Barack Obama would have pardoned Nixon given the chance? I truly think that he would have, mainly because he acts in office to help protect the people that he serves, and is least concerned about himself. This reflects in the policies that he has passed in just the 2 short years he has served in office as president.