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Bush issues pardons to 17 minor criminals

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WASHINGTON (AP) — President Bush pardoned 17 minor criminals Wednesday.

Most weren't even sentenced to prison. The longest sentence any of the 17 received was five years behind bars.

Bush has now issued 99 pardons and sentence commutations during five years and seven months in office, mainly to clear the name of people who committed relatively minor offenses and served their sentences long ago.

He remains the stingiest of postwar presidents in this regard. By comparison, Bill Clinton issued 457 in eight years in office and Bush's father, George H. W. Bush, issued 77 in four years in office; Ronald Reagan issued 406 in eight years, and Jimmy Carter issued 563 in four years..