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George Floyd’s name was removed from a list of those recommended for pardon by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott.
Abbott granted eight full pardons Thursday, but Floyd was not among those receiving clemency after the Texas Board of Pardons and Parole withdrew his and 24 other names from consideration due to “procedural errors and lack of compliance with board rules.”
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The board had earlier unanimously recommended a posthumous pardon for a 2004 drug conviction for Floyd, whose death at the hands of police sparked nationwide protests last year. Texas has a yearly tradition of giving out pardons around the holiday season, with the governor typically granting clemency to several people who committed minor offenses years ago.
Abbott had not indicated whether he planned to pardon Floyd had he been given the opportunity. Floyd spent most of his life in Texas before moving to Minnesota.
“The board will review and resolve procedural errors and issues related to any pending applications in compliance with their rules,” a spokesperson for Abbott said in a statement. As a result of the board’s withdrawal of the recommendation concerning George Floyd, Governor Abbott did not have the opportunity to consider it. Governor Abbott will review all recommendations that the board submits for consideration.”
But Allison Mathis, a Houston public defender who applied for the pardon for Floyd, told the Dallas Morning News that she had not been informed of any errors in the application, adding that Floyd’s removal from consideration “smacks of something untoward.”
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“Greg Abbott and his political appointees have let their politics triumph over the right thing to do and what clearly is justice. This is actually outrageous,” Mathis said Thursday. “I expected an up or a down vote. I did not expect this kind of misconduct.”
Floyd could still be pardoned at a later date if the board decides to revisit the application.