Mr. Obama did not issue a single pardon for nearly the first two years of his presidency. Once Justice Department recommendations are forwarded to the White House, they languish an average of nine months before the president acts. The administration has recently made headway in reducing the backlog of cases — from 4,700 to 2,000 — but only because it denied thousands of petitions.Calling pardons a "last best chance for justice" for many, the piece says the power should be used "unsparingly to give a second chance to those who have been wrongly convicted or sentenced to disproportionately and unjustifiably long prison terms." See post editorial here.
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Today's Washington Post asks why President Obama is not exercising his power to grant presidential pardons. Bouncing off of a recent government report, the Post notes there are "significant delays occur at virtually every step of the pardon process," but "the greatest share of the blame for the slow speed resides with the White House":