Clemency: A Prisoner’s Dream—and Disillusionment

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“Hope springs eternal in the human heart,” wrote Alexander Pope in 1733. Today, his words are ritualized in a production staged quarterly in Olympia, Washington.

Countless Washington prisoners pray to one day star in the show.

It is televised on the public access channel, and produced by the Board of Pardons and Parole.

This Board recommends to the Governor whether a prisoner should receive executive clemency. However, getting the Board's five members to make favorable recommendations is no easy . . .

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