Haley Barbour ignites storm of controversy with last-minute pardons
In his last days in office. Gov. Haley Barbour pardoned more than 200 people, at least four of whom have been convicted of killing other people. One of them had been denied parole just two weeks before.
Former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour issued more than 200 pardons on his last day in office, including four for convicted murderers.
The pardons were issued late last week and went into effect over the weekend. Barbour left office on Tuesday, the Huffington Post reported.
But now, a Mississippi state judge has stepped in to halt at least some of the pardons — saying Barbour may be in violation of the state's constitution. According to the Christian Science Monitor, 21 of the pardons have been halted temporarily while a review is underway.
"Circuit Judge Tomie Green temporarily blocked the pardons of 21 current and former inmates after a complaint by Attorney General Jim Hood, who was visibly angered by what he considered Governor Barbour's violation of the state constitution. Under the law, those seeking pardons have to publish their intentions in local newspapers, and Mr. Hood said that, in at least some of the cases, Barbour granted the reprieves even though notices had not been published," the Monitor reported.
Barbour said most of those he'd pardoned had already been approved for release by the parole board, and some had already been let out. But in at least one case, the inmate, who had worked at the governor's mansion while in prison, had been denied parole just two weeks ago.
"The Takeaway" is a national morning news program, delivering the news and analysis you need to catch up, start your day, and prepare for what's ahead. The show is a co-production of WNYC and PRI, in editorial collaboration with the BBC, The New York Times Radio, and WGBH Radio Boston.