President of the United States Joe Biden released six individuals from prison on Friday, including a lady who killed her allegedly abusive husband over 50 years ago and five others who were found guilty of drug or alcohol-related charges, Reuters reports.
The most recent pardons demonstrated Biden’s effort to move the nation’s criminal justice system away from the war-on-drugs philosophy that he and other liberal politicians had supported.
As he prepares for a potential 2024 re-election run, the Democratic president is under pressure to demonstrate progress on racial and criminal justice concerns. A fifth of the world’s convicts is in the United States while having fewer than 5% of the global population.
People of color, who account for a sizeable section of Biden’s support base, make up a disproportionate percentage.
Since taking office, Biden has used his pardon authority three times to commute the sentences of those found guilty of drug-related charges.
In October, he overturned hundreds of people’s convictions for federal charges related to basic marijuana possession, and he started a review of how the substance is categorized by federal authorities.
All of the individuals who received pardons on Friday had been found guilty of a crime, some of which occurred when they were young and for which they had already served a term. Since then, they have grown professionally and have been interested in volunteer work.