Because questionable legal moves are his bread and butter these days, Rudy Giuliani has reportedly approached Donald Trump with a request for a “preemptive pardon,” which would effectively shield him charges after the president leaves office. According to two sources for The New York Times, Giuliani floated the idea as recently as last week, and it wasn’t the first time the subject has been broached. As for what future charges Giuliani is attempting to duck is unknown, but a likely scenario is the ongoing investigation into his activities in Ukraine, which ultimately lead to Trump’s impeachment.
While a preemptive pardon is unusual, it has happened before, but in extremely rare and extenuating circumstances. Via the Times:
Such a broad pardon pre-empting any charge or conviction is highly unusual but does have precedent. George Washington pardoned plotters of the Whiskey Rebellion, shielding them from treason prosecutions. In the most famous example, Gerald R. Ford pardoned Richard M. Nixon for all of his actions as president. Jimmy Carter pardoned thousands of American men who illegally avoided the draft for the Vietnam War.
Taking a page from Trump’s playbook, Giuliani denied requesting a pardon and accused the Times of being “#FakeNews” on Twitter. “NYT lies again. Never had the discussion they falsely attribute to an anonymous source,” Giuliani wrote. “Hard to keep up with all their lies.”
#FakeNews NYT lies again. Never had the discussion they falsely attribute to an anonymous source. Hard to keep up with all their lies.
— Rudy W. Giuliani (@RudyGiuliani) December 1, 2020
Of course, Giuliani securing a pardon from Trump wouldn’t exactly come as a shock. The president recently pardoned his former National Security Advisor Mike Flynn, and in 2017, he pardoned Sheriff Joe Arpaio before he was even sentenced for contempt of court. Like Giuliani, both men are loyal Trump supporters.
(Via New York Times)