Trump’s use of the presidential pardon, and how it departs from his predecessors

U.S. Representative Duncan Hunter leaves federal court after pleading guilty to misusing campaign funds in San Diego, California, U.S., December 3, 2019. Photo by REUTERS/Mike Blake

Christmas is days away, and for 15 people who were naughty, President Trump delivered a special gift last night: a presidential pardon. Five people had their sentences commuted. On the list: two men convicted in Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, three former members of Congress who supported Trump early on, and four Blackwater contractors convicted of killing civilians in Iraq. Blackwater was founded by one of Trump’s biggest supporters: Erik Prince, the brother of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. 

Credits

Guest:
David Farber - law professor at the University of California, Berkeley

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Sarah Sweeney, Angie Perrin, Michell Eloy, Amy Ta, Rosalie Atkinson, Brian Hardzinski, Bennett Purser, Nihar Patel