Listen Live
WOL Listen Live
WOL Featured Video

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department is not supporting a bid to pardon Jack Johnson, the black heavyweight boxing champion who was imprisoned nearly a century ago because of his romantic ties with a white woman.

The department’s pardon attorney, Ronald L. Rodgers, tells Rep. Peter King in a letter that DOJ general policy is not to process posthumous pardon requests. The Associated Press obtained a copy of the letter Thursday.

Rodgers writes that the department’s resources for pardon requests are best used on behalf of people “who can truly benefit” from them. King, a New York Republican, sponsored a congressional resolution which urged President Barack Obama to pardon Johnson.

Rodgers noted that Obama still has the authority to pardon whomever he wishes.


Senate Urges Obama To Pardon Black Boxer, Jack Johnson

McCain Wants to Pardon Jack Johnson