Clemency in the United States encompasses many related procedures, including amnesty, commutation, pardon, remission, and reprieve. All involve forgiving someone for a crime or cancelling the penalty associated with his or her crime. When an individual has paid his/her debt to society or is considered deserving, executives at the federal or state level can choose to assist his/her cause through any of these mechanisms. In the United States, there have been multiple examples of executive clemency throughout history—some more memorable than others—depending on ...

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