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Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi

Representing the 8th District of Illinois

Congressman Krishnamoorthi: “Today The President Is Publicly Pardoning A Thanksgiving Turkey, But There’s Nothing To Stop Him From Secretly Pardoning A Political Turkey”

November 21, 2017
Press Release

SCHAUMBURG, IL – Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi of the House Oversight Committee issued the following statement today:

“Today the President is publicly pardoning a Thanksgiving turkey, but there’s nothing to stop him from secretly pardoning a political turkey – and there is a lot of foul behavior in this White House. This matters because President Trump has reportedly explored the possibility of pardoning senior aides, family members, and even himself before the findings of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation come home to roost.

I know the American people are probably fed up from all the gobbling about the gravy train of scandals coming from the administration and officials accused of feathering their nests, but secret pardons are no joke. Unfortunately, there is no legal requirement that the president make public all pardons he issues. As President Ford established, pardon power extends to preemptive pardons, issued before charges are brought. Beyond the American political norms President Trump would be violating through such pardons, secret pardons would also undermine the work being done by Mueller’s team.

By issuing secret, preemptive pardons, President Trump could shield his allies from legal consequences before charges are even filed, sabotaging Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation long before anyone outside the White House would have any idea. To prevent President Trump from issuing secret pardons, if he has not done so already, I’ve introduced the Presidential Pardon Transparency Act to require the president to disclose all pardons within three days of issuing them. The President has the power to pardon, but the American people deserve to know how and when he does so.”