Don Siegelman is praying for a longshot

Don Siegelman prays for a longshot

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Several thousand people have signed a petition asking President Barack Obama to keep former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman from spending the next few years in prison. But Siegelman realizes the odds of getting a presidential commutation are about the same as winning a state lottery.

More than 5,700 people convicted of federal crimes have asked Obama for a commutation of their sentences. He’s granted one.

Obama’s predecessor, George W. Bush, approved 11 commutation requests out of 8,576 received during his two terms. Those seeking but not getting a commutation included former Illinois Gov. George Ryan, who appealed his racketeering and fraud convictions.

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