Trump totals 116 pardons and 89 commutations…But Not Himself, Or Julian Assange
President Trump granted celemency to dozens of people on Wednesday, keeping alive a tradition of last-minute pardons observed by President Obama. The biggest names on the list included Trump’s former campaign chief and White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, as well as rappers Lil Wayne and Kodak Black (the former worked with Trump on a plan to financially power black Americans), former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick (one of many American big-city mayors who have ended up in federal prison on corruption charges), and former top GOP fundraiser Elliott Broidy, who pleaded guilty in October to acting as an unregistered foreign agent.
Of course, the two biggest names that weren’t on the list were those of President Trump himself (remember all those MSM anonymously sourced stories claiming Trump was “considering” it?) and Wikileaks’ founder Julian Assange.
Considering Assange’s recent major legal victory in the UK – where a judge ruled against extraditing him to the US on the grounds that he might face inhumane punishments that could lead to his suicide – and the intense lobbying for Trump to drop a federal case against the Wikileaks’ founder, the fact that his name wasn’t included seems almost suspicious.
Tucker Carlson, the Fox News host and vocal proponent of freeing Assange, offered something of an explanation: apparently, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky has sent word to the White House that if Trump were to pardon Assange, then they would be much more likely to convict the president in a second impeachment trial. Carlson speculated whether backhanded threats like this were even legal, but “we’re not lawyers, we don’t know. It’s certainly wrong. But more than that, it tells you everything about their priorities.”
Trump granted pardons to 73 people, and commutations to another 70, according to the White House, which released the full list here.
President Trump has actually issued far fewer pardons and commutations than his predecessor, President Obama who gave 1,715 commutations and 212 pardons