Proposals Could Limit Governor's Pardon Power

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

Mississippi lawmakers might ask voters to approve a constitutional amendment limiting the governor's power to pardon convicted criminals.

That's according to Sen. Michael Watson of Pascagoula, chairman of the Senate Constitution Committee.

Speaking Monday at a press forum in Jackson, Watson said one option would be to ban any governor from pardoning people convicted
of certain crimes such as murder, sex crimes or crimes against children.

Watson says another option would be to allow a governor to grant a pardon only if a clemency board recommends it.

Haley Barbour pardoned 198 people during his final days as governor, including at least one convicted murderer who had been denied release by the Parole Board.

Barbour's successor, Phil Bryant, says he
doesn't intend to issue any pardons.

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