President Obama might be on his way out, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t still more work to be done.
On Thursday, President Obama commuted the prison sentences of 98 people. Back in August the commuted the sentences of 111 people. In total, over the course of his reign, POTUS commuted 872 people, 688 of which happened this year. However, that’s nowhere near the number he promised back in 2014 (10,000).
When the President grants a commutation, it shortens the prisoner’s sentence, but it doesn’t pardon it. Yesterday’s commutations included 42 life sentences.
Of the act, White House counsel Neil Eggleston wrote:
“The President’s clemency authority is a powerful tool being used to powerful effect, but the individualized nature of the relief granted today also highlights the urgent need for bipartisan criminal justice reform legislation. Only Congress can achieve the broader reforms needed to ensure our federal sentencing system operates more fairly and effectively in the service of public safety.”