Trump pardons Steve Bannon, Elliot Broidy, and others before final exit from White House

Former U.S. President Donald Trump issued several pardons on his last night in the White House. The pardons were issued to some of his close associates and supporters for criminal charges.

The pardons included Trump’s former campaign chief and ex-White House advisor Steve Bannon, who was involved in swindling donors in a false effort to build a wall at the Mexico border; major Republican fundraiser Elliot Broidy who was charged for acting as an unregistered foreign agent’ rapper Lil Wayne who pleaded guilty to possession of weapons, last month. A total of 73 pardons were issued by Trump last week.

The former President did not issue any pardon for himself or any of his adult children despite speculations that he would do so, even though there were no pending federal criminal charges against them.

Ex-Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, who was charged for fraud and had begun his 28-year prison sentence, had his sentence commuted by Trump. The same was the case of Eliyahu Weinstein who was serving a prison sentence for swindling hundreds of millions of dollars from Americans in a Ponzi Scheme.

Rapper Kodak Black, who had been serving a three-year prison sentence for possession of weapons, also had his sentence commuted. A total of 67 pardoned people had their criminal charges commuted by former President Trump.

In recent months, before his final exit from the White House, Trump considered offering more “preemptive pardons” to people who were yet to be charged with crimes, like his attorney Rudy Giuliani and several of his adult children, as well as a “self-pardon” for himself.

While Trump didn’t use his powers to protect himself and his children, he was able to shield some of his former associates and supporters from the consequences of any criminal charges against them, in no way any President has.

There are claims that Trump’s pardons were more politically and ethically dubious than any president’s in past times. There are suspicions a potential of bribery-for-pardon, and the Justice Department is looking into it.

The pardon and clemency grants are said to be products of months of lobbying with Trump and the White House, according to the New York Times. The investigators from the Justice Department will look into the matter to ensure that there was no criminal corruption behind any of the pardons.

In 2017 and 2018, Trump pardoned Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, former Bush White House aide Scooter Libby, and conservative commentator Dinesh D’Souza. All of which were high-profile and notable political figures. However, Trump openly hinted that the pardons would last as long as they remain loyal.

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