Minnesota link to Pres. Obama's commuting of 46 prison sentences

President Obama has commuted the sentences of 46 nonviolent drug offenders, noting that the sentences for many far exceeded the severity of the offense.

A commutation is when a president reduces someone's prison sentence, it does not forgive the offense. By commuting only a few dozen sentences, President Obama already leads modern presidents in the use of this constitutional power, and he promises more to come.

President Obama wrote a personal letter written to each of the 46 individuals receiving a commutation. Tap the letter below to read an example.

This story has a link to Minnesota. One of the nation's leaders on this issue is Prof. Mark Osler at the University of St. Thomas School of Law. Professor Osler runs a commutations clinic, and supervises law students filing commutation petitions on behalf of clients.

Disclosure: Ted Haller is a St. Thomas Law graduate, a participant in Prof. Osler's clinic, and is representing a client in a pending case.

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