Trump Considering Pardoning Himself And Family Before Impeachment
President Donald Trump is reportedly considering pardoning himself and his family before he potentially gets impeached.
However, the Department of Justice have said that it is not proper for a president to pardon themselves.
CNN Politics reported earlier today, January 13, that Trump wants to pardon himself and his family in the hopes that it ‘could stave off prosecution’ charges he may face.
The 74-year-old reportedly looked at pardoning himself and his children starting from his first year in office, but it’s become more prevalent now following last week’s Capitol riot; something which Trump is being accused of inciting.
In addition to this, Trump cannot pardon himself if he is impeached.
Presidents are able to grant pardons to other people, and Trump has done this recently, but it’s completely unheard of for a president to pardon themselves.
Last month, several of Trump’s associates began asking for pardons, including his attorney Rudy Giuliani, who was under investigation in early 2020 regarding business dealings in Ukraine.
The only other president thought to have discussed pardoning themselves was President Nixon, who faced impeachment proceedings for obstruction of justice, abuse of power, and contempt of Congress. He later resigned on August 9, 1974, before the full House could vote on articles of impeachment.
Former Attorney General Bill Barr had previously warned President Donald Trump against pardoning himself, CNN reports. He resigned last month after publicly stating there was no widespread election fraud; something which Trump has been claiming since he lost the November 2020 election.
Barr believes a 1974 Justice Department legal memo stating that a president cannot pardon themselves should apply to Trump. Part of the memo reads, ‘the fundamental rule that no one may be a judge in his own case, the President cannot pardon himself’.
However, the memo does state that a president can resign and then be pardoned by their vice president once that person assumes the presidency.
As the impeachment trial goes on, Congress can strip Trump of his pardon power to prevent him interfering.
According to The Washington Post, ‘Congress might announce that it is intentionally stripping the president of the power to pardon himself or anyone else directly associated with the crimes related to the insurrection.’
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