Trump pardons his former campaign aide, shaming Republican lawmakers | Donald Trump

Donald Trump pardoned 15 people and commuted all or some of the sentences of five others, in a pre-Christmas pardon announced by the White House on Tuesday.

Among the recipients, George Papadopoulos, a former campaign aide, pleaded guilty as part of the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election; Alex van der Zwan, the Dutch son-in-law of the Russian-German billionaire Khan; And three former Republican MPs.

Trump’s use of presidential pardon has sparked controversy. In November, for example, it is Pardons His former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI during the Russian investigation.

Speculation flourished over who would be pardoned by Trump afterward, and former aides Paul Manafort and Rick Gates, attorney Rudy Giuliani, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, and NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden are among the common names. Mentioned.

It was so mentioned That Trump had considered issuing a preventive amnesty for himself and his family members who had worked in the White House.

Pardons and other acts of clemency, often directed at ordinary federal prisoners, are a common feature of the end of any presidency. according to Pew Research CenterYet Trump “has used clemency to less than any president in recent history.”

“Although scarce so far, Trump’s use of a presidential pardon has sparked controversy because of the nature of the pardons and mitigations decisions,” Pew added.Personal or political contact To the President, “According to the July analysis by the Lawfare Blog, it often circumvents the formal process by which requests for clemency are considered.”

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When applied to federal cases only, the presidential pardon does not imply acquittal from the charges at hand.

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