(JTA) — Former U.S. Secretary of State Donald Rumsfeld said Jonathan Pollard should not be granted clemency.
Rumsfeld, who served under Presidents Gerald Ford and George W. Bush, said during an interview on Israel’s Channel 10 that granting Pollard early release would send the wrong message.
Rep. Michael Grimm (R-N.Y.) this week became the first Republican in the U.S. House of Representatives to back the latest push for clemency for Jonathan Pollard. Earlier in March, U.S. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) became the first active Republican politician to join the recent calls for Pollard’s release.
Pollard, who has been imprisoned since his 1985 arrest, was sentenced to life in 1987 after being convicted of spying on behalf of Israel. He is said to be ill.
The most recent push for clemency has garnered substantive support among congressional Democrats, and a range of former officials of Republican and Democratic administrations.