Mississippi AG Block Haley Barbour Pardons

Barbour pardoned a lot of people -- 208, many criminals of the worst sort -- and caught red Mississippi by surprise. One thing you generally count on Republican governors for is keeping murderers behind bars.

One snag, though: Part of the Mississippi Constitution specifies that all pardons must follow a 30 day period of notice, for public complaint and comment. Mississippi's AG says he can find no such notice, so the pardons are void, at least for now.

I wonder what happened here? Maybe people just didn't notice this part of the constitution and it's been ignored in practice for one hundred years? And now, in a frenzy to find some basis to challenge Barbour on the pardons, it's now found, hiding in plain sight?

Interesting. Check out this 8pm Update:

Mississippi Circuit Judge Tomie Green has temporarily blocked the release of 21 inmates who'd been given pardons or medical release by Republican Haley Barbour in one of his final acts as governor.


Thanks to @slublog.

Posted by: Ace at 09:36 PM



Comments

1 Surely not first.

Posted by: StPatrick_TN at January 11, 2012 09:39 PM (lJJMb)

2 Meh, Just tell 'em all to report back to prison. Problem solved.

Posted by: Rmoney Voter - You All Will Be Assimulated at January 11, 2012 09:39 PM (7MFxV)

3 Well, in that case, Barack Obama is a Stuttering Clusterfuck of a Miserable Tyrant.

Posted by: StPatrick_TN at January 11, 2012 09:39 PM (lJJMb)

4 Barbour must not plan to run for office ever again.

Posted by: huerfano at January 11, 2012 09:40 PM (lXi+d)

5 This is odd. When a conservative Republican governor has his dick slapped by a judge for being insufficiently aware of law and order, something else is going on.

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo (NJconservative) at January 11, 2012 09:41 PM (nEUpB)

6 Weird all around.

Posted by: AmishDude at January 11, 2012 09:42 PM (qqYb/)

7 Another Southern Democrat shows his true colors.

As they say.

Posted by: Call me Ishmael at January 11, 2012 09:42 PM (kkQ6Q)

8 I want to know more. Barbour doesn't strike me as the sort to pardon people just for the hell of it.

Posted by: Trimegistus at January 11, 2012 09:42 PM (rCEvh)

9 Saw this over at instapundit. What is Haley smoking? Two of the murderers worked at the Governor's Mansion.

Someone's staff sucks.

Posted by: Billy Bob, the guy who drinks in SC at January 11, 2012 09:43 PM (hXJOG)

10 Maybe one of you lawyers out there can speculate whether estoppel could be a factor in overturning this block... One hundred years?

Posted by: El Zopilote at January 11, 2012 09:44 PM (U4wlZ)

11 What the hell is an Elephant King doing as Governor of Mississippi?

Posted by: AoSHQ Book Club Member at January 11, 2012 09:44 PM (h6mPj)

12 Mitt zapped him with his Mandate Ray.

It makes you do stupid shit.

Posted by: eman at January 11, 2012 09:44 PM (dWuuB)

13 Silver lining: Barbour will never be a Republican nominee for president.

Posted by: Dave R. at January 11, 2012 09:44 PM (bAsJQ)

14 "...estoppel..."


Posted by: El Zopilote at January 11, 2012 09:44 PM (U4wlZ)
Isn't that Merck's new entry in the ED drug market?

Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo (NJconservative) at January 11, 2012 09:45 PM (nEUpB)

15 Christian forgiveness, indeed. For the Wall Street robber barons only.

Posted by: Greg at January 11, 2012 09:46 PM (2Y56z)

16 I don't have anemoticon of sympathy for these people.

Posted by: Meggie Mac at January 11, 2012 09:46 PM (OO+Nq)

17 I just don't understand why the fuck Barbour would pull a lame brained stunt like this.

Posted by: maddogg at January 11, 2012 09:46 PM (LVY/f)

18 Until now I thought of Haley Barbour as a good guy. Holy fucking shit.

Posted by: Jimbo at January 11, 2012 09:47 PM (O3R/2)

19 What's this guy's follow-up act?

Is he going to slam "Vulture Capitalism?"

Yet another "real conservative," down the shitter.

Posted by: CoolCzech at January 11, 2012 09:48 PM (niZvt)

20 14
"...estoppel..."


Posted by: El Zopilote at January 11, 2012 09:44 PM (U4wlZ)
Isn't that Merck's new entry in the ED drug market?


Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo (NJconservative) at January 11, 2012 09:45 PM (nEUpB)
As long as it doesn't prevent some kind of STD, it should be golden.

Posted by: StPatrick_TN at January 11, 2012 09:48 PM (lJJMb)

21 Remember when the only reason HB would not have been a great candidate for POTUS is he looks like Boss Hogg? and the stereotypes would kill him.

Posted by: palerider at January 11, 2012 09:49 PM (dkExz)

22 19 Is he going to slam "Vulture Capitalism?"
Hey - I'm a firm believer in capitalism, thanks for the recognition!

Posted by: El Zopilote at January 11, 2012 09:50 PM (U4wlZ)

23 Someone's staff sucks
Posted by: Billy Bob, the guy who drinks in SC at January 11, 2012 09:43 PM (hXJOG)

One staff sucking joke, coming up!

Posted by: CoolCzech at January 11, 2012 09:50 PM (niZvt)

24 I guess Haley is bucking for a slot on Morning Joe?

Scarborough could use him on his staff...

Posted by: CoolCzech at January 11, 2012 09:53 PM (niZvt)

25 24
I guess Haley is bucking for a slot on Morning Joe?





Scarborough could use him on his staff...

Posted by: CoolCzech at January 11, 2012 09:53 PM (niZvt)
Delivered, as promised, on time. Not funny, but punctual. I'd pick on you more, but the Czechs have given us Pilsner, the 1968 revolution, and Ceska Zbrovka.

Posted by: StPatrick_TN at January 11, 2012 10:00 PM (lJJMb)

26 Maybe the convicts offered him free bacon.

Posted by: probably banned now at January 11, 2012 10:04 PM (aPkU9)

27 I'd say we dodged a big bullet when Boss Hogg decided not to run for national office.

Posted by: dome sope at January 11, 2012 10:05 PM (+kznc)

28 New update to the story makes it seem less unreasonable:

Updated 8:40 p.m. ET: In response to criticsm about the pardons, former Gov. Haley Barbour released as statment from his office Wednesday evening that said 189 of the 215 people pardoned were already out of prison.

"My decision about clemency was based upon the recommendation of the Parole Board in more than 90 percent of the cases," the statement said.

The statement, reported by WTVA of Tupelo, went on to say 13 of the 26 inmates released from custody cost the state a lot of money due to their medical expenses and can be returned to custody if they commit another crime.

Posted by: Brian in New Orleans at January 11, 2012 10:07 PM (5atBc)

29 Whatever happen to the armed robbers sisters that Barbour released to allow them to give and get a kidney transplant.

Posted by: Tjexcite at January 11, 2012 10:08 PM (sk1Ym)

30 Man, that seems cruel to ones being pardoned. Free one moment, not the next.

Posted by: Serious Cat at January 11, 2012 10:08 PM (2YIVk)

31 Holder justice to weigh in as soon as race is clear on each case.

Posted by: I am the walrus, goo-goo-ga-joo at January 11, 2012 10:09 PM (ybkwK)

32 It's as if the GOP is doing everything in its power, nationwide, to McCain this election.

Posted by: t-bird at January 11, 2012 10:11 PM (FcR7P)

33 I just realized: ## of these inmates have medical conditions and are costing the state of Mississippi a lot of money? Uh, what are the odds they don't qualify for medicaid? That is messed up if convicted murderers are mandated to get a higher dollar level of care than law abiding citizens. Very messed up.

Posted by: palerider at January 11, 2012 10:15 PM (dkExz)

34 By Barbour's resignation, is some stupid now leaving the Stupid Party™? Seems like a plus.

Has anyone said exactly how DOOMed we are in the past hour?

Posted by: AnonymousDrivel at January 11, 2012 10:17 PM (eHIJJ)

35 lot of people going off half cocked. unless you know none of these guys deserved pardons you might check yourself. after all mississippi is the state that sentenced cory maye to death row. there's a good chance a lot of these guys needed a pardon.

Posted by: chas at January 11, 2012 10:18 PM (xAq1C)

36 This would be a better place to play the "this is no different than what Barack Obama did" card. Unless, of course, the pardons were more reasonable than first reported.

Posted by: t-bird at January 11, 2012 10:19 PM (FcR7P)

37 Thank God.

Barbourino scraped the bottom of the barrel with these pardons. One dude shot his former wife in the head while she held their baby in her arms. He served 18 years of a life sentence before Barbourino decided to free him. Guess the murdering bastard made a helluva omelot at the Gov's mansion.

That's the tradition in Mississippi. You get assigned to the Gov. mansion as a convict and you are pretty much guaranteed a pardon. God bless this judge for doing the right thing. Barbourino won't even answer questions about these pardons!!! He's ducking the press like Nayweather ducking Pacquiao.

Posted by: Uncle Wang's Pancake House & Boob Emporium at January 11, 2012 10:22 PM (jiwQf)

38 How AWESOME would it be to be one of those who thought they were getting out! woo hoo!

Posted by: mycherrysmores at January 11, 2012 10:34 PM (khS/6)

39 My cynical instinct is that he's hiding a payoff among the mass pardons. Somebody paid him to pardon somebody. He can't just pardon the payoff, too obvious. So pardon hundreds and hide the corruption in the chaos.

Posted by: Clubber Lang at January 11, 2012 10:36 PM (QcFbt)

40
I'm from the Magnolia State, and guys, this is huge down here. Apparently because it's a tradition among outgoing governors topardon trustys who work at the Governor's Mansion, Barbour overlooked some pretty....egregious....offenses. One of his last pardons from the Mansion was a charming individual who stalked his estranged wife, then burst into the home of a family friend where she was staying to have some degree of protection against her hubby. Once there, the future-pardon recipient ignited some fireworks to cover up the sounds of the shots her fired, one of them into the head of his wife at point-blank range as she held their six-month old child, the other into the head of the family friend. He left their child there on the floor in a pool of his mother's blood. The wife's family and that of the friend have gone public with their fear about what this gentleman might decide to do when he's a free man again.
The Clarion Ledger has a comprehensive list of all 200-plus pardons, and it's pretty appalling - Brett Favre's brother is on there, being given a pass for vehicular homicide, as is the wife of a prominent Jackson entrepreneur for a similar offense. Everyone's wondering - influence, maybe considerations offered? The shocking thing is that it's completely out of touch with Barbour's public image here, which until this moment has been overwhelmingly positive. He was the "Katrina Governor," the state exec that handled it right, the standard-bearer of the G.O.P.'s return to power in this state after a century in the wilderness. This is an inexplicable move on his part to have, as Marshall Ramsey put it yesterday, "opened the doors on all the cages" before he left office.

Posted by: A. Pendragon at January 11, 2012 10:37 PM (XDdB5)

41 I really hate pardon stories because it's always the same: makes it sound like they let the doors open.

So now it isn't 200, it's 26.

Sorry, I can't get worked up over post-sentence pardons.

13 are costing the state money and are, presumably, too sick to commit violent crimes.

Now maybe the rest of the 13 are horror cases, I don't know, but it doesn't sound like a lot of corruption or a Huckabee- level thing so far.

It is, however, a lot of pardons and I think you should be able
to defend each one if you're a (former) governor.

Posted by: AmishDude at January 11, 2012 10:45 PM (qqYb/)

42 AG is a democrat. explains it all

Posted by: Billy Bob at January 11, 2012 10:46 PM (hXJOG)

43 Schwarzenegger used the same illegal pardon procedure for one of his crony's murdering son. I think he got out anyway, cuz this is California and no one cares about the law.

Posted by: LASue at January 11, 2012 10:48 PM (hrr4h)

44 Thanks A. Pendragon. That is really terrible.

And you're right, it really breaks with his public image.

What is a "trusty"?

Posted by: AmishDude at January 11, 2012 10:50 PM (qqYb/)

45 42 AG is a democrat. explains it all
------------------------

No, the facts explain it all. Why don't you educate yourself before shooting your mouth off.

Posted by: Uncle Wang's Pancake House & Boob Emporium at January 11, 2012 10:51 PM (jiwQf)

46 My cynical instinct is that he's hiding a payoff among the mass pardons.
Hardly cynical. A large percentageClinton's pardons were bought. Selling pardons is a time honored practice.

Posted by: Purple Avenger at January 11, 2012 10:52 PM (WCBz9)

47 It may not be a quid pro quo corruption but just "the son of a friend" type corruption.

Posted by: AmishDude at January 11, 2012 10:55 PM (qqYb/)

48 First Huckabee with these inexplicable pardons, now Barbour. Is there something in the water down there? WTF?

Posted by: Anabolic State at January 11, 2012 10:55 PM (e1pl5)

49 Huckabee's were off the charts. Some of these are truly terrible but with Huckabee all you had to say was you found Jesus and you got a pardon.

Posted by: AmishDude at January 11, 2012 10:58 PM (qqYb/)

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Posted by: hftvj at January 11, 2012 10:58 PM (PiiND)

51
Amish - it isn't merely a lot of pardons, it's more pardons than any other Mississippi Governor, Democratic or Republican, has issued in the last half-century, if not indeed further back. While thirteen of the recipients of pardons or clemency may have been sick and could represent a savings to the state in cost-care (although that's doubtful - most of them are impoverished and the taxpayers will likely still be picking up the bill), that doesn't appear to hold true for the remainder of the 200-plus. Plus, there are way, way more than 13 of the pardons that are "horror cases." The fellow I referred to above now has an entire community in fear, and similar stories are coming out from other families.
AG Hood is undoubtedly seeing a chance for some political point-scoring here, but his actions do reflect the feelingss of a significant number of Mississippians. We're almost in a state of shock - Haley Barbour let a guy go like the one I described above, who shot his wife at point-blank range as she held their infant child, then departed, leaving that same child pooled in his mother's blood, and we can't figure out what he was thinking. Not that he's giving anyone a chance to know, either - Barbour dodged questions about the pardons at yesterdays gubernatorial inauguration, and his office has been stonewalling the media since last weekend on this question.

Posted by: A. Pendragon at January 11, 2012 10:59 PM (XDdB5)

52
Amended to add - didn't see it earlier:
A trusty is a convict selected from the state penal system to perform work outside the prison walls, sometimes for an extended period - they have to have solid records of good conduct and tobe rated as responsible and trust-worthy by penal officials. It's an archaic term that Mississippi hangs onto for some reason - probably for the same reason that we still elect a constable for each county, and that the person who certifies causes of death is an official with the elaborate title of Coroner-Ranger, something right out of medieval English jurisprudence.
It became a standard practice during the tail end of the nineteenth century and the onset of the twentieth to assign some trustys to the Governor's Mansion, to act as unpaid staff, and as Uncle Wang pointed out above, it's often been seen as a path to some sort of clemency, if not pardon, but in times past it hasn't been folks like the father of the year I described above.

Posted by: A. Pendragon at January 11, 2012 11:08 PM (XDdB5)

53 The hated RINO Mitt Romney never pardoned anyone. Ever.

Posted by: Ken Royall at January 11, 2012 11:08 PM (9zzk+)

54 You do realize I also endorsed Romney.

Posted by: Haley Barbour in Chief at January 11, 2012 11:26 PM (E/4T5)

55 Why would a Republican governor turn loose Democrat voters?

Posted by: Jay Guevara at January 11, 2012 11:35 PM (lTl0z)

56 I don't think anyone involved in this story deserves even an emoticon of sympathy.

Posted by: mycherrysmores at January 11, 2012 11:55 PM (khS/6)

57 190 were already out; the pardons basically restore the right to get a hunting license and vote. The others were mostly sick inmates who had served substantial parts of their sentences, but I'm not up on the individual cases. The AG is a Democrat possibly just trying for headlines.

Mississippi does require any inmate seeking a pardon publish a public notice near the location of the crime, and some might not have done this.

Posted by: Adjoran at January 12, 2012 12:14 AM (VfmLu)

58 The daily caller has an interesting poll. It asks "Who will be the next GOP candidate to drop out?
One candidate is winning overwhelmingly with 50.82% of the vote.

Posted by: hey at January 12, 2012 12:22 AM (oZfic)

59 Delivered, as promised, on time. Not funny, but punctual. I'd pick on you more, but the Czechs have given us Pilsner, the 1968 revolution, and Ceska Zbrovka

I'm disappointed. I googled Ceska Zbrovka thinking it was the name of a hottie Czech model.

Posted by: OregonMuse at January 12, 2012 12:23 AM (SbxFW)

60 Can someone translate? Kind of herbed out...

Posted by: Max Power at January 12, 2012 12:40 AM (+wxCD)

61 check out #32

Kind of trippy...Maybe has a point.

Posted by: Max Power at January 12, 2012 12:43 AM (+wxCD)

62 59 Delivered, as promised, on time. Not funny, but punctual. I'd pick on you more, but the Czechs have given us Pilsner, the 1968 revolution, and Ceska ZbrovkaI'm disappointed. I googled Ceska Zbrovka thinking it was the name of a hottie Czech model.
Posted by: OregonMuse at January 12, 2012 12:23 AM (SbxFW)
Me too. I guess great moron minds think alike.

Posted by: Have Blue at January 12, 2012 12:54 AM (IKTC8)

63 I see serious homosexual involment with Barbour and the "in-house" inmates. I do not believe money made the "trick"

Posted by: NortonPete at January 12, 2012 01:35 AM (8zxoH)

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Posted by: pipe fittings at January 12, 2012 07:09 AM (E4h7T)

65 58
The daily caller has an interesting poll. It asks "Who will be the next GOP candidate to drop out?One candidate is winning overwhelmingly with 50.82% of the vote.

Well now he is managing to fall in that poll too. Consistency.

Posted by: RioBravo at January 12, 2012 10:02 AM (eEfYn)

66 This is probably nothing compared to what will happen if pres. B.O. finds himself a lame duck this fall. Could he decide to empty the entire federal system of the "socially freindly"?

Posted by: deepred at January 12, 2012 10:13 AM (2aETb)

67 "My decision about clemency was based upon the recommendation of the Parole Board in more than 90 percent of the cases," and tremendous cash-money payouts just in time for retirement for the remaining 10%.
FIFHim.

Posted by: Entropy at January 12, 2012 12:30 PM (Ci0JG)

68 This is probably nothing compared to what will happen if pres. B.O. finds himself a lame duck this fall.
I have said before and will say again, if Obama loses in November, we must use any of the 15 excuses we have (non-recess recess appointments?) to impeach him in late November.
Or else. Seriously. We should be afraid.

Posted by: Entropy at January 12, 2012 12:31 PM (Ci0JG)

69 Czechs have given us Pilsner, the 1968 revolution, and Ceska Zbrovka
Koprova.
Boiled beef in a dill sauce, with sweet cabbage and potato dumplings.

Posted by: Entropy at January 12, 2012 12:33 PM (Ci0JG)

70 Well, he spent the past couple of months in all sorts of radio interviews talking about how what he was planning to do next was "make money."

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Unless he decided to get started a little early in the Ray Blanton and Bill Clinton model. Do the Yankee governors also sell pardons, or do they only do that south of the Mason-Dixon line?

Posted by: Dewey at January 12, 2012 03:39 PM (YTJQp)

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Posted by: tax7uhsbdg at January 13, 2012 01:26 AM (XwHVv)

72 we must use any of the 15 excuses we have (non-recess recess appointments?) to impeach him in late November.
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Posted by: Linda at January 13, 2012 01:44 AM (MA0Ok)

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Posted by: good at January 13, 2012 09:13 AM (9qBeN)

74 Barbour's defense of pardons is straight from Hollywood--in a bad way.

At http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YeXzl0yahSM there's a new video that draws parallels between Haley Barbour's defense of his pardons on religious grounds and the ignorant opinions lampooned in a Coen brothers film.

Posted by: BulletPeople at January 14, 2012 03:59 PM (GcX2V)

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Posted by: hftvj at January 15, 2012 12:51 AM (ZQ4wh)






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