Hey, a Republican told the truth on Meet the Press!
Chuck Todd linked up all the pardons that Trump has given, or has publicly contemplated, and noted:
Martha Stewart; charged with lying to the FBI, obstructing justice, and prosecuted by Comey,
Dinesh D’Souza: Corrupt/illegal campaign contributions, set up straw donators to campaigns and paid them back to get around laws limiting the amount one can give prosecuted by Obama’s Justice Department. Claimed that he was politically selected because he was a conservative filmmaker and writer,
Rod Blagojevich, “sold” Senate seats, even though a governor has an absolute right to appoint a Senator, so it was all “just politics” ….
See how it all fits together? Throw in Joe Arpaio and one sees another element in his clear message; Trump supporters will be taken care of if they do the right thing.
But, back to Lowry’s comment, because it is rather shocking that a staunch conservative, one from The National Review, would note Trump’s precise motivation. After all, he works for a publication that opined that the D’Souza’s conviction warranted a pardon because it was “politically motivated,” even though D’Souza made that very same argument before a federal judge, introduced his evidence, and had it summarily dismissed. D’Souza then got a recommendation for the low end of the federal sentencing guidelines and spent only eight months in a halfway house.
Stewart lied to the FBI which became the basis of an obstruction of justice charge, prosecuted by none other than James Comey. Apparently Trump wants people to think that Comey was a liar and conniver even way back then.
The Rod Blagojevich possible pardon is the most interesting at all. “Blago” got caught red-handed, tapes of phone calls (sound familiar) doing something real wrong, forcing political contributions out as a sale of Obama’s old Senate seat. A Trump pardon of Blagojevich shouts to the world that politics is messy, even when it is for personal gain, sometime people have an absolute right (Governors appoint Senators to open seats) and you cannot prosecute ugly politics.
Each charge that Trump wants to personally override is of the type that he (and his family) might very well face in the near future. Trump wants prosecutions of the type above seen as illegitimate by their very nature. So, yes, Trump is already abusing the pardon power, because it has nothing to do with rendering justice to the people getting the pardons, it has everything to do with saving Trump, and that is a problem.
When even Rich Lowry can see Trump’s motivations and calls them out, you can rest assured that every prosecutor working on Trump’s case gets the message, and likely doubles his/her efforts.