He’s making a list, checking it twice. He already knows who’s naughty, and that convicted felons aren’t nice.
But he’s going to pardon them anyway.
Some are expecting a pardon blitz before January 20, our quadrennial celebration of democracy that no one expects the sore loser in the White House to attend.
Right about now, hopeful jailbirds like Paul Manafort are belting out that holiday classic: “I’ll be home (and out of the slammer) for Christmas.” (Actually this bad boy is already out, released from prison in May to home confinement because of COVID-19 fears.) He’s serving a seven-year term.
But I’m guessing Manafort will be out like Flynn (Michael Flynn), whom our sulking leader pardoned last week. Flynn was U.S. National Security Advisor for 22 whole days.
Our Pardoner-in-Chief fired Flynn in 2017 for lying to Vice President Mike Pence about his discussions with the Russian ambassador during the last transition. Flynn subsequently pleaded guilty, not once but twice, to lying to the FBI, before he decided he was actually, like, totally innocent.
Yes, it’s that magical time inside the Beltway, which is akin to monsoon season in South Asia: it’s raining crooks and felons. Besides Flynn, the orange empathizer in the Oval Office also has pardoned a slew of distinguished characters: among them individuals convicted of murder, attempted murder, racketeering, obstruction of justice, violation of the white slave trade act, bank robbery, campaign contribution fraud, mail fraud, conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, making false statements on a loan application and use of fire to destroy property of the United States.
Now there are reports that Trump’s longtime bestie lawyer Rudy Giuliani is angling for a pardon — a general one that would cover him just in case not everyone in law enforcement agrees with him that he has never done anything illegal.
No president, of course, has ever pardoned himself, which is why the smart money is on the current one doing just that.
Here’s a scary thought. What if our unindicted co-conspirator runs out of friends, relatives, and fowl associates to liberate so they won’t cop a plea? OK, it’s unlikely, but it could happen.
What about dead people? Some people see dead people—and some presidents pardon them. Honest, they have, hear me out.
Of the five deceased individuals who have received posthumous pardons by presidents of the United States, three have been pardoned by our current POTUS. He’s already on a macabre roll.
The three were heavyweight boxing champion Jack Johnson, businessman Zay Jeffries, and Susan B. Anthony. Ms. Anthony’s crime, ironically enough, was voting. She went to the polls in 1872, 48 years before women could legally vote in America.
Because I know how busy our lame duck Duffer-in-Chief is, all hunkered down in his White House bunker (when he’s not out golfing), compulsively Tweeting nonsense and not responding to any questions or pressing issues of state, I have taken the liberty of compiling a list of the dearly departed whom he could pardon. Space only permits my top four:
- Benedict Arnold, the Revolutionary War traitor who cozied up to a foreign government, big time. Was that so wrong?
- Lizzie Borden, who allegedly took an ax and gave her mother 40 whacks, but some say it was only 39.
- Al Capone, aka “Scarface,” a “businessman” whose only officially certified crime was tax evasion, which is American as apple pie—everyone knows it, especially the man wielding the pardon pen.
- Jefferson Davis, slave owner and the late President of the Confederate States of America, who was totally into states rights and disenfranchising African Americans. Actually, Jeff was accused of, although never charged with treason, but heck, let’s pardon him anyway.