Resources / The Ethical Argument for Funding in Clemency: The “Mercy” Function and the ABA Guidelines

This Article discusses the current state of clemency funding across death penalty jurisdictions today, and highlights the many ways in which the funding currently available for clemency is insufficient. It argues that the way clemency representation is currently being funded risks putting capital defense attorneys at odds with their ethical obligations under the ABA Guidelines to conduct a robust investigation and present a compelling case for clemency before a client is executed.