Editor's Pick

“Pardoning Trump? DeSantis and Haley Promise Support

On Sunday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley issued a joint statement voicing their intent to pardon former President Donald Trump if he is convicted of any criminal charges potentially arising from the investigation of the January 6th Capitol Hill riots. The governors cite the lack of solid evidence to charge Trump with inciting the riots. They also point to the uncertainty of the Justice Department’s intentions toward the former president as motivations for offering a preemptive clemency. The statement reads in part, “We do not believe that any individual– not even a former president – is above the law. However, the law must be applied fairly and judiciously, and not as a weapon of political vengeance or score-settling. A pardon in this case would send a message that the Justice system is not used as a tool of politics.” The statement is sure to draw criticism from those who believe Trump is guilty and should be held accountable for his role in the rioting. In particular, some argue that the pardons set a dangerous double standard, as many of the Capitol Hill rioters have been charged and convicted without benefit of clemency. However, it is also worth noting that most governors have the discretion to issue pardons and commutations to citizens convicted of crimes in their respective states. DeSantis and Haley’s joint statement makes it clear that they wish to extend this same courtesy to Trump. The statement has been met with some skepticism, but for now, it appears that the governors’ intentions are earnest. What happens next remains to be seen. Regardless of the outcome, DeSantis and Haley’s joint statement serves as an illustration of the power governors have to affect criminal justice in their states.

You may also like