Barbour stands by pardons
January 13th, 2012
06:47 PM ET
6 years ago

Barbour stands by pardons

(CNN) - Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, who flirted with a presidential bid last year, defended his decision on Friday to pardon 200 criminals, four of whom were charged with murder.

"We believe people who ask for forgiveness of sin and redeem themselves should get a second chance, and 20 years in the penitentiary is time enough to come to grips with getting your redemption and forgiveness," the outgoing Republican governor said on Fox News.

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The decision has created a legal firestorm in the state since the pardons were announced Monday.

Furious with the governor's executive orders, the state's attorney general, Jim Hood, said Friday that "a large number of staff" was examining each case, and his office aims to make the pardons "null and void."

"Our preliminary investigation indicates that the majority of these purported pardons did not have sufficient publication and therefore we will introduce our evidence (in court on January 23) and ask the court to hold these purported pardons null and void," the attorney general said.

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Filed under: Haley Barbour • Mississippi
soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. SafeJourney

    Even if you break the law, huh Barbour. You will not get away with it and you are done in politics

    January 13, 2012 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  2. SafeJourney

    Barbour, you should ask Gov Huckabee about setting murderers free. One of the murderers Huckabee set free killed a police officer.

    January 13, 2012 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  3. Guest

    Is this guy insane? He is a typical loony who thinks he can do what ever he wants to. The worst Governor, I have ever came to know.

    Throw him in a jail.

    January 13, 2012 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  4. Thomas

    He will be the best lobbyist Mississippi can buy.

    January 13, 2012 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  5. Slightly Left of Center

    "We believe people who ask for forgiveness of sin and redeem themselves should get a second chance, and 20 years in the penitentiary is time enough to come to grips with getting your redemption and forgiveness,"

    We? Who's the we? I doubt the rape victims or families of the murdered are among the 'we'. Did these criminals ask God for forgiveness? How do you know it was granted? And redemption? What have they done to redeem themselves? And who is going to monitor them after their release to see if they are still free of sin and full of redemption?

    Pathetic and sickening.

    January 13, 2012 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  6. GI Joe

    Let me see - 200 families paid $$ to get someone pardoned. $10? NO. $100? NO. $1000? Maybe. MORE?? - PROBABLY.

    He probably got a lot of cash - of course, no one in Mississippi will ever admit it. They don't want to "go missing".

    January 13, 2012 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  7. bonesbone

    There a special place where Haley Barbour is heading, and I don't think God give pardons to bad governors...

    January 13, 2012 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  8. T'sah From Virginia

    ►Barbour stands by pardons◄
    And he loves how this raises him to stardom
    He feels he is GOD and “personally” knows them all
    They confess – He forgives – and now he stands tall!!

    What about the victims and the families who were condemned?
    Barbour didn't even have the decency to locate and tell them…
    that the murderers who changed their lives are a “specialty”
    and were released back into their neighborhood and society!!!

    MURDER is a vicious crime – “please” DON’T take what’s “mine!!”
    The DEATH PENALY does not “solve it” because that’s another CRIME
    So when you take a life “don’t” cry later – YOU MUST PAY…
    and LIFE in PRISON “without” PAROLE should be the ONLY way!!

    There shouldn’t be any bargaining with murderers…………..PERIOD…… as long as the victim’s families are ALIVE!!!

    January 13, 2012 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  9. Charlie in Maine

    I tell you he wants to be Vice President. He knows the trend that the GOP nominee always tries to pick someone worse than they are: Eisenhower & Nixon, Nixon & Agnew, Bush & Cheney, George SR. & Quayle and who can forget McCain & Palin.

    Barbour can't just be a bad governor to be worse than this group he must become a public menace.

    January 13, 2012 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  10. DebG

    What a turd! Really there should be no "pardon" for murder. Why these guys and not other murderers? I'm sure he'd be ticked off if one of his family member's murderer was pardoned.

    January 13, 2012 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  11. Larry L

    Another fine example of a Southern Republican leader. Can Mississippi be a worse place to live?

    January 13, 2012 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  12. HenryB

    Haley is a fo0l like all other Republicans. Law and order until that no longer is convenient.

    January 13, 2012 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  13. bonesbone

    Haley Barbour tuff on crime...until it's time to leave...

    January 13, 2012 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  14. Marie MD

    He did a huckabee except that he knew well ahead of time that he would never win anything.
    Oh yes, that redeeming baloney. We are talking killers you buzz head!

    January 13, 2012 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  15. Rich in CO

    Jesus forgives sins, Governor. Not you.

    January 13, 2012 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  16. ThinkAgain

    These the same Repub yahoos who believe in the death penalty? Shouldn't we just wait everyone out, hoping they'll "redeem" themselves?

    January 13, 2012 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  17. William dodge

    Pray the murder away

    January 13, 2012 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
  18. FIELD1stSGT

    I heard this man talk on Fox. He is a nut case. I pray not all Miss. people are like him.

    January 13, 2012 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  19. Larry in Houston

    Way to Go Mr. Barbour !! My congrats to You !! IF Obama Loses this fall, I have a 'gut feeling' or shall I say a "hunch" that come december, he will take something out of your playbook. I'm betting a Dollar to anybody's dime, that Obama will "Pardon" O.J. ( but I don't think he go as far as pardoning Manson, though) If Obama Loses BIG, he may end up pardoning Made – Off .

    January 13, 2012 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  20. Squigman

    To look at This person, is to look into the face of pure evil. The hypocracy begins, where he, and his party try to justify their actions. And they claim to be conservative? WAKE-UP.

    January 14, 2012 12:31 am at 12:31 am |
  21. kat

    Barbour, you're finished. As a Republican, I am ashamed of your decision to Pardon all of these murderes, what were you thinking. Alllowing these thugs to vote, own weapons and be employed without acknowledging their past.. this is a disgrace and a slap down to the victims.

    January 14, 2012 01:35 am at 1:35 am |
  22. Mike in Texas

    Maybe he should have consulted with Michael Dukakis and Mike Huckabee first.

    January 14, 2012 01:36 am at 1:36 am |
  23. Marjee123

    Notice he gave most of the murder conviction pardons to men who killed their wives or girl friends. That good old boy stuff still rolls in the south.

    January 14, 2012 04:45 am at 4:45 am |
  24. Phyllis Lawrence

    I am not familiar with the specific cases, so cannot comment about the appropriateness of any individual pardons, I do think Gov. Barbour is right when he says: "We believe people who ask for forgiveness of sin and redeem themselves should get a second chance, and 20 years in the penitentiary is time enough to come to grips with getting your redemption and forgiveness." I volunteer in a prison, co-facilitating Alternatives to Violence Project workshops with lifers and other prisoners, and I see them as human beings who are making amends every day with their actions. Even the prison's correctional officers have told me that they'd be fine with "50% of these guys being back on the street." I am also a victim of violent crime myself, but do not see the need for taxpayers to warehouse people who have become accountable and transformed their way of thinking. I'd rather see 10 years of effective programming and education than 20 years of confinement and no opportunities for change. 95% of incarcerated individuals are going to "come home" anyway – let's make that a road to successful re-entry, rather than enhancing negative thought patterns and behaviors.

    January 14, 2012 04:48 am at 4:48 am |
  25. Tell the Facts

    CNN and other media outlets have a responsibility to set the facts straight in this story.

    The facts are that there were 215 persons who recieved pardons. Of those, 189 were are out of jail, their terms having ended. That leaves only 25 inmates that recieved pardons. A judge blocked the release of 21 of those remaining inmates. Meaning only 5 were actually released.

    NOT the 200 plus that are claimed by these reports in the media.

    3 of the 5 have reported to authorities as requested. The other 2, well maybe they are afraid that the "mob" mentality that has been stirred up will have them dragged back behind the prison walls...

    Journalist have a responsiblity to aid society by watching and reporting the actions of governmnent and other civil events. But that comes with an obligation to dig up the facts and tell the truth. NOT to create a media stir.

    January 14, 2012 07:57 am at 7:57 am |
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