Former acting FBI chief says Trump pardons are undermining justice: 'It's remarkably disgusting'
FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe (Getty Images)
Former FBI chief Andrew McCabe criticized the wave of presidential pardons issued this week by Donald Trump as "remarkably disgusting."
Speaking to CNN, McCabe said the president was "actively involved in undermining the judicial system he is supposed to protect and defend".
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"These pardons are essentially the culmination of those acts of obstruction of justice," quoted in the Mueller report, he added.
Mr. McCabe was fired by Trump's first attorney general, Jeff Sessions, the day before he retired. A Justice Department report at the time said that McCabe had exceeded his authority by allowing an aide to speak to the Wall Street Journal about an FBI investigation into the Clinton Foundation.
Mr McCabe criticized Mr Trump for making it clear that in his circle it pays not to work with authorities.
"He's going to pay you a pardon and give you a free ticket to get out of prison," he said.
The Mueller report mentioned the possibility that Mr Trump's campaign manager, Paul Manafort, chose not to work with authorities because he expected to be pardoned by Mr Trump. Long-time Trump advisor Roger Stone also failed to work with the Special Counsel probe and previously received both a pardon and conversion.
A pardon is the complete overturning of a criminal conviction, while a commutation merely reduces a person's sentence.
"What was seen and mentioned in the Muller Report is now closed. Pardons have been dangled. And now they have been delivered in return for protecting the President. I don't even know how to describe it, it's so obviously corrupt," McCabe said.
According to the Justice Department, Mr. Trump has issued 70 pardons and 24 commutations. Mr Trump has received 9,200 commutation petitions, compared with 1,715 commutations from President Obama and more than 33,000 petitions. President George W. Bush converted 11 sentences after over 8,500 inquiries.
Mr McCabe suggested that this would not be the end of Mr Trump's pardon parade. "Where does he go next? Bannon is an obvious potential recipient ... It has been reported that Giuliani is interested in a pardon. He could probably use one as the New York investigation continues. And there really are no limits." . " ," he said.
Republican Senator Ben Sasse made a six-word statement on Dec. 23 about Mr. Trump's recent pardon: "This is rotten to the core."
The Nebraskan Senator released the statement after "President Trump exercised his constitutional power to pardon another tranche of offenders like Manafort and Stone who openly and repeatedly violated the law and harmed Americans," the press release said .
Despite these comments, Utah's Mitt Romney was the only Republican Senator to convict Trump during the impeachment process. He boasted, according to ProPublica, of not having granted pardons during his tenure as governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007.
Mr McCabe did not hold back as he followed up the President and said that "there is no limit to the shame this President will submit" to help his family and friends and punish his enemies.
He said, "This guy is actively using pardon to undermine justice. He rewards people who have refused to work together to provide information that prosecutors, courts and judges have actively lied to. We have never seen a rock bottom We can go deeper, "he said.
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