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No pardons from Gov. Walker during first two years in office

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Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker pauses for a moment in Madison
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker pauses for a moment in Madison

MADISON (WSAU)  Governor Scott Walker has not granted a single pardon after two years in office – and he has failed to set up a Pardon Advisory Board which normally reviews such requests.

Walker spokesman Cullen Werwie confirms that the Republican Walker has suspended the pardon system, but would not say why. He tells the A-P that Walker has received quote, “a bunch” of requests for pardons. He did not say exactly how many. Pardons do not overturn felony convictions – but they give those who’ve served their time a better chance for a new life, and less of a chance of being denied jobs. It also restores the rights to own firearms, hold public licenses, and serve in public office. Incoming state Senate Democratic leader Chris Larson says Walker is shirking his duties by not considering pardons. He calls it a quote, “important fail-safe to an imperfect judicial system.”

Normally governors appoint people to a Pardon Advisory Board. But Walker has not appointed anyone, and the panel has not met during his two years in office.

Former Democratic Governor Jim Doyle granted about 300 pardons during his eight years in office, most coming in the last three-and-a-half months. His Republican predecessor Scott McCallum granted around 25 pardons in two years. And Republican Tommy Thompson granted 62 pardons in his final seven years in office, ending in 2000.

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