President Donald Trump on Thursday said he was considering using his power to pardon to grant clemency for Martha Stewart and former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
Stewart was convicted of obstruction of justice and lying to investigators, and Blagojevich is still serving his 14-year prison sentence for corruption.
The news came just hours after Trump tweeted that he was pardoning the conservative pundit Dinesh D’Souza.
Trump has granted just four other pardons and one sentence commutation so far.
President Donald Trump told reporters he was considering pardoning Martha Stewart and commuting the sentence of ex-Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich in a string of clemency announcements he unexpectedly made Thursday.
A jury found Stewart guilty in 2004 of obstructing justice and lying to investigators about the reasons she sold shares of a company. She served five months in prison.
Blagojevich is serving a 14-year prison sentence after being convicted of corruption, stemming from a scheme to sell the Senate seat left vacant by Barack Obama, who was elected president in 2008. Blagojevich is not eligible for release until 2024.
Trump told reporters aboard Air Force One on Thursday that Blagojevich’s sentence was excessive, and that bragging about receiving a reward for a Senate appointment was “a stupid thing to say,” but that “lots of politicians do,” according to White House pool reports.
Of Stewart, Trump said she “used to be one of my biggest fans.”
Both Stewart and Blagojevich have connections to Trump through his former career as a reality TV star. Stewart hosted her own spin-off of Trump’s “The Apprentice” series, and Blagojevich competed on Trump’s “Celebrity Apprentice” show in 2010.
How Trump has used his power to pardon so far
Earlier that morning, Trump also announced on Twitter he was pardoning Dinesh D’Souza, the far-right political pundit who pleaded guilty in 2014 to campaign finance fraud.
Trump has granted only four other pardons and one sentence commutation in his presidency so far, many of which have gone to his political allies after shoring up significant support for their cases among fellow conservatives.
Last August, Trump pardoned Joe Arpaio, the bombastic ex-sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona, who was convicted of criminal contempt for violating a court order for his department to stop racially profiling Latinos. Arpaio was a vocal Trump supporter throughout the 2016 campaign, and often parroted Trump’s hardline stance on immigration.
In March, Trump pardoned Kristian Saucier, a former Navy sailor who took photos of classified areas inside …read more
Source:: Business Insider