Trump considers pardon for Blagojevich

Trump pardons Dinesh D’Souza, conservative agitator who pleaded guilty to campaign finance fraud

President Donald Trump says he will pardon conservative commentator Dinesh D'Souza, who pleaded guilty to campaign finance fraud.

Trump has granted five pardons since taking office including to Joe Arpaio, a Trump supporter who was convicted of contempt of court for racially profiling Hispanics while serving as a sheriff in Arizona.

Trump has been particularly drawn to cases where he believes there was a political motivation to the prosecutions - a situation that may remind him of his own predicament at the centre of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian election meddling, which he insists is nothing but a "witch hunt".

"Then he got fired & I got pardoned", Mr. D'Souza said.

D'Souza pleaded guilty in 2014 to a straw-donor scheme created to benefit New York Republican candidate Wendy Long, who was trying to oust Democratic Sen.

Trump did not explain what he meant by saying that D'Souza had been treated unfairly, but the White House put out a statement saying that "D'Souza was, in the President's opinion, a victim of selective prosecution for violations of campaign finance laws".

Conservative scholar and filmmaker Dinesh D'Souza, left, accompanied by his lawyer Benjamin Brafman leaves federal court in NY. That prosecution was led by one of Bharara's predecessors as USA attorney, James B. Comey, who would go on to be Federal Bureau of Investigation director and also get fired by Trump.

"It's nearly like President Trump went through a list of potential crimes that he and his White House could be charged with and found pardons for other people to lay the groundwork", he said on CNN.

It's also worth noting that Blagojevich appeared on Trump's "The Celebrity Apprentice" television show in 2010.

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"I'm very grateful to President Trump for giving me my [full] rights back", he said.

Blagojevich was impeached as governor of Illinois in 2009 and sentenced in December 2011 to 14 years in prison for corruption including trying to sell the Illinois Senate seat vacated by Barack Obama. He said, 'Dinesh, you've been a great voice for freedom, ' and he said, 'I've got to tell you man-to-man you've been screwed.

Trump also floated the possibility of issuing a pardon to Martha Stewart, in addition to Rod Blagojevich.

"Mr. D'Souza accepted responsibility for his actions", it said.

- Benjy Sarlin (@BenjySarlin) May 31, 2018Never forget that Dinesh D'Souza unapologetically tweeted this right after the murder of Trayvon Martin.

D'Souza never received any jail time.

Trump tells reporters that Blagojevich said something dumb but that "lots of politicians" do and thinks his sentence is excessive.

D'Souza, who made the documentary 2016: Obama's America, entered the plea a week after the federal judge overseeing the case rejected his claim that he was selectively prosecuted. Stewart was convicted in 2004 for obstruction of justice and lying to investigators.

Also pardoned was former White House aide I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby. "The framers introduced the separation of powers that we have in our Constitution and they designed the pardon power as a check on the legislative and judicial authorities".

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