Dozens of Trump Allies Reportedly Call White House Directly Seeking Presidential Pardons
As Joe Biden is now presumed to take up the presidency of the United States in January, the outgoing Trump administration is reportedly set to use its powers of executive clemency to shield close allies from future prosecution.
As the Trump administration comes to an end, the White House has received a myriad of requests from people seeking a presidential pardon .
According to a report by CNN , requests for pardons or commutations have been made to such a degree that a spreadsheet has been put together to better organise the number of appeals made directly to Trump’s closest aides.
Citing unnamed sources close to the White House, CNN reported that those seeking presidential clemency have approached the administration directly through Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, as well as the White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows, and a White House counsel, Pat Cipollone, if Trump is not available to speak.
“It’s turned crazy,” one anonymous person familiar with the efforts said. “There’s a lot of activity”.The anonymous source claims that “everyone assumed there’s no formal process and they should reach out to the administration directly”, according to CNN
“Everyone hopes they have a friend of a friend of a friend of a cousin who they hope will get them to read their email”.Those who the president knows personally or have well-connected parties vouching on their behalf appear to be first in line for the potential presidential pardon.
© AP Photo / Evan Vucci
President Donald Trump displays the $1.5 trillion tax overhaul package he had just signed, Friday, Dec. 22, 2017, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington. The bill provides generous tax cuts for corporations and the wealthiest Americans, plus smaller cuts for middle- and low-income families.
According to CNN, at least one person working for clients looking for pardons said they hoped that their past loyalty to Trump throughout his single term in office would now turn lucrative.
Reports say that Trump is basing his decisions on loyalty, just as Republicans are jumping ship to work with the incoming Joe Biden administration and not backing the president’s continued claims that the 3 November election was won due to voter fraud.
Advisers and associates who have not backed him in his attempts to overturn the elections have been largely disregarded. One person who reportedly used to be in frequent contact with Trump, but who urged the president to calm his election fraud claims, has not heard from the president for weeks.
The CNN report claimed that over two dozen people in Trump’s closest circle are being considered for pardons, people the president believes were targeted for political reasons. This comes amid hundreds of requests made directly to the White House, and tens of thousands currently waiting for review by the Justice Department.
First-time nonviolent drug offender Alice Johnson and former boxer Duke Tanner – who had their prison sentences commuted by Trump earlier in his term – were also at the White House asking for additional pardons, according to Tanner on social media.