Trump reportedly plans to issue 100 pardons and commutations on his final day in office

Trump reportedly plans to issue 100 pardons and commutations on his final day in office
President Donald Trump.Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images
  • President Donald Trump plans to pardon or commute the sentences of 100 people on his last day in the White House, CNN reported.
  • The list was drawn up during a Sunday meeting between Trump, Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, and other aides, and will most likely be made public Monday or Tuesday, The Washington Post reported.
  • Some allies believe Trump expects to benefit from many of those pardons and commutations after the presidency, CNN reported.
  • The list of pardons and commutations could include Dr. Salomon Melgen, an eye doctor convicted of healthcare fraud, and the rapper Lil Wayne.
  • The list is not expected to include Trump, CNN said, though the president is said to have considered pardoning himself and his family.

President Donald Trump plans to pardon or commute as many as 100 people on his final full day in office, CNN reported.

A list of names was drawn up by Trump on Sunday during a meeting with Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, and numerous other aides, The Washington Post reported.
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The decisions are expected to be announced Monday or Tuesday, The Post reported.
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While the identities of the 100 are not known, some of the president's allies are said to believe that many of the pardons or commutations will go to people Trump expects to benefit from in the future.

"Everything is a transaction," a source told CNN. "He likes pardons because it is unilateral. And he likes doing favors for people he thinks will owe him."

Trump is expected to depart the White House on Wednesday morning - the day of President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration - and permanently relocate to his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.

After that, Trump is said to be considering reviving his TV career, building a $2 billion presidential library, launching a TV or social-media network, or running for president again in 2024.
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Trump reportedly plans to issue 100 pardons and commutations on his final day in office
Vice President Mike Pence standing behind Trump at the Oval Office in September 2020.Anna Moneymaker-Pool/Getty Images

But as his presidency winds down, Trump has been inundated with requests for pardons, including from the "Tiger King" star Joe Exotic and the "Q-Anon Shaman" Jacob Anthony Chansley.

And some of Trump's allies appear to be benefitting even if they aren't seeking pardons themselves. On Sunday, The New York Times reported that several people close to the president had collected tens of thousands of dollars each in exchange for helping people seek pardons from Trump. A former CIA officer told The Times that an associate of Rudy Giuliani, Trump's personal lawyer, told him that Giuliani could help arrange a pardon for $2 million. Giuliani denied involvement in clemency requests.
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Read more: Biden's inauguration is raising tens of millions of dollars but won't say how it's spending the money

Though the identities of the 100 people are still unknown, CNN reported that Dr. Salomon Melgen, an eye doctor from Florida who is in prison after being found guilty of healthcare fraud, was expected to be one of those granted clemency.

Bloomberg reported last week that the rappers Lil Wayne - who faces prison time - and Kodak Black - who is in prison - were also being considered for pardons.
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Trump is also said to have considered issuing preemptive pardons for allies and, possibly, himself. Preemptive pardons would cover actions that have already taken place but have not yet resulted in criminal charges.

Bloomberg said such pardons were being considered for the White House chief of staff, Mark Meadows; senior advisor Stephen Miller; director of personnel, John McEntee; and social-media director, Dan Scavino. The Times reported in early December that Giuliani was under consideration for such a pardon.

For weeks, it has been rumored that Trump was considering preemptive pardons for himself and his immediate family, but a source told Reuters the president was not planning to as of Sunday.
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Trump reportedly plans to issue 100 pardons and commutations on his final day in office
Roger Stone, whom Trump pardoned last month, in Fort Lauderdale in July 2020.Getty Images/Johnny Lewis
According to CNN and Reuters, aides have for weeks tried to dissuade Trump from issuing a preemptive pardon for himself, saying it may not even work while making him look guilty of crimes for which he might be accused.

Trump has issued a slew of pardons and commutations since losing the 2020 presidential election.

On December 22, Trump pardoned 20 people, including two Trump campaign associates who were ensnared in the FBI's Russia investigation, two Border Patrol agents accused of shooting an unarmed immigrant, and four former Blackwater guards who were convicted of killing Iraqi civilians.
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The next day he pardoned the longtime GOP strategist Roger Stone; his former campaign manager Paul Manafort; Jared Kushner's father, Charles; and a former K-9 police officer who set her police dog on an unarmed homeless man in 1995.

Last week, the House of Representatives voted to impeach Trump for his role inciting a group of his supporters who stormed the US Capitol in an attack that caused five deaths. Trump now faces a trial in the Senate, whose members could vote to bar him from holding federal office again.
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