President Obama announced Tuesday that he is granting pardons to 79 more people serving federal prison sentences for nonviolent drug-related crimes.
President Obama has now pardoned 1,023 individuals (342 serving life sentences), more than the past 11 presidents combined.
“He is committed to using his clemency power in ways not seen from any other president in the modern era,” White House Counsel Neil Eggleston told the media. Eggleston says the commutations are an example of the United states being a “nation of second chances.”
According to Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, there are over 6,000 remaining petitions for drug offenders seeking pardons. Although it’s unknown how many of these petitions will be approved for clemency before Obama leaves office on January 20th, the White House’s announcement of the commutations states that the president is “committed to continuing to exercise the clemency power with additional grants of commutations and pardons throughout the remainder of his presidency.”