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Cold hearted Mike Pence refuses to pardon a man wrongly convicted and proven innocent

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In a growing list of heartless Mike Pence actions, the Indiana governor has now denied a pardon for a man wrongly convicted and now proven innocent.

A BuzzFeed report, details the sad history of Keith Cooper, who served 10 years of a 40-year sentence after being misidentified. In 2008 shooting victim Michael Kershner and his mother, Nona Canell filmed statements and admitted they were wrong. This came after new DNA evidence was found and a jail informant admitted he lied. Canell asked investigators multiple times to see a lineup of potential suspects because she couldn’t be sure. An Elkhart Police detective promised her that they had “the right guy.” They didn’t.

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When the new evidence came to light, a judge in the case offered Cooper a deal if he agreed to be resentenced for the crime. By accepting the deal he was granted “time served” from the 10 years, but still isn’t found by a court to be considered innocent.

Cooper filed a pardon request to the parole board and they unanimously voted that he should be pardoned and have his two felony charges taken off of his criminal record. If Pence granted him clemency, he would be the first person ever in the state’s history to earn it.

Today, Pence refused, saying it needs to stand “out of respect for the judicial process.” This comes after a two-year delay where Pence tried to claim that Cooper’s paperwork wasn’t in order.

“I’m tired of people judging me by that conviction. That [Department of Correction] number. That’s not who I am,” Cooper said in August. “Man, I know that better than my own Social Security number.”

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Pence’s irrational decision was slammed by the South Bend Tribune saying it “defies reason.”

“An innocent man who has had a decade of his life stolen from him by a flawed process shouldn’t be advised to sit tight and wait a bit longer for the system to finally get it right,” the editorial says. “Every one of us should feel the sting of such injustice. Nothing can erase all that Keith Cooper has endured, but the next step couldn’t be clearer. Governor Pence, issue this pardon.”

Cooper’s attorneys think Pence is trying to push the decision off on another governor since he’s out of the office as of January.

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“We are really disappointed in Governor Pence’s failure to provide justice to an innocent man. It’s clear that he has punted the petition to the next Governor because it’s election season,” Cooper’s attorney Elliot Slosar said.

Pence’s office said in a statement it hasn’t exactly made a final decision but slammed Cooper’s attorneys claiming they needed to do a better job.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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2020 Election

Trump campaign mocked after unveiling new red hats: ‘Do you have arm bands as well?’

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President Donald Trump's 2016 "Make America Great Again" hats have been replaced with new "Keep America Great" hats.

Trump re-election campaign manager Brad Parscale modeled one of the hats on Twitter.

Here is some of what people were saying:

https://twitter.com/LazarusLeBaron/status/1165430924093165568

Here I made an arm band design for you pic.twitter.com/inTyqVi2wo

— Christopher Goodwin (@LazarusLeBaron) August 25, 2019

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‘This will not end well’: Far-right extremism expert warns of Trump’s intensifying authoritarianism

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An expert on the far-right in America warned of President Donald Trump's "genuinely dangerous levels" of authoritarianism on Saturday.

Author David Neiwert posted a long Twitter thread on the commander-in-chief's "Social Dominance Orientation" -- and warned it will not end well.

Neiwert is the author of the 2017 book Alt-America: The Rise of the Radical Right in the Age of Trump.

Here is the thread he posted:

https://twitter.com/DavidNeiwert/status/1165428067138846720

https://twitter.com/DavidNeiwert/status/1165428524808724480

https://twitter.com/DavidNeiwert/status/1165429018486702081

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Ilhan Omar trolls GOP lawmakers ‘losing their minds’ over sharing the House floor with three Muslim Democrats

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One of the first Muslim women elected to Congress trolled her GOP colleagues for "losing their minds" over the existence of three Muslims in the House of Representatives.

The three Muslims in Congress are Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Rep. André Carson (D-IN), with Omar and Tlaib being the first to Muslim women in the body

Rep. Mo Brooks (R-AL) worried about the "growing influence" during an appearance on a local radio station.

Intercept columnist Mehdi Hasan posted a link to the interview on Twitter, calling it "open bigotry."

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