Though he’s on his way out of office in January, calls are growing across the nation’s capital for a full-scale Justice Department investigation into Donald Trump and his possible crimes as soon as a new attorney general is nominated by Joe Biden and confirmed by the Senate.
On Tuesday, Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) made it clear that he believes there is no shortage of felonies that have been committed by Trump and members of of his administration and that he intends to make certain they’re held accountable, releasing a statement which reads:
“Donald Trump and members of his administration have committed innumerable crimes against the United States. He has endangered our national security. He ripped families apart. He poisoned the Census. He has personally profited from his office. He has attacked our elections and sought to throttle democracy. He was rightly impeached by the House of Representatives. He has engaged in treachery, in treason. He has all but given up on governing and protecting our nation and if he had a shred of dignity he would resign today.
“Therefore, in 2021 the entire Trump administration must be fully investigated by the Department of Justice and any other relevant offices. Donald Trump along with his worst enablers must be tried for their crimes against our nation and Constitution. Importantly, any further abuse of the sacred pardon power to shield criminals would itself be obstruction of justice, and any self-pardons would be illegal.”
Be sure and note that Pascrell mentions the idea of “self-pardons,” which are reportedly being discussed inside the White House. Trump is expected to pardon Michael Flynn, his former national security adviser and his 2016 campaign manager, Paul Manafort as way to get back at the findings of the Muller Report.
Additionally, Trump may issue pardons to Jared Kushner, Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump, and Eric Trump, all of whom have connections to allegedly criminal actions.
But can a president pardon himself? We don’t actually know because no president has never done so and the issue has never gone before the courts for review.
Donald Trump needs to be charged at both the federal and state level. So do members of his administration. Kudos to Congressman Pascrell for starting a discussion of the issue.