Murphy v. Ford 390 F. Supp. 1372 (1975)

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MURPHY v. FORD 390 F. Supp. 1372 (1975)

On September 8, 1974, President gerald r. ford granted to his predecessor, richard m. nixon, a "full, free and absolute pardon … for all offenses" that he might have committed while President. A Michigan lawyer brought suit in federal District Court for a declaratory judgment invalidating the pardon. The District Court judge dismissed the suit, holding that the pardoning power is unlimited, except in cases of impeachment, and may as properly be exercised before criminal proceedings begin as after conviction. Citing the federalist, the judge argued that the intention of the Framers in establishing the pardoning power was to provide for just such instances.

Dennis J. Mahoney

(see also: Articles of Impeachment of Richard M. Nixon; Watergate and the Constitution.)