Trump to pardon conservative commentator convicted of campaign finance violations

Trump to pardon conservative commentator convicted of campaign finance violations

Trump's decision to pardon D'Souza was viewed largely as a signal to longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen, who now faces an investigation into possible campaign finance violations, among other crimes.

In a tweet, Trump said D'Souza was "treated very unfairly".

Twitter had a torrent of emotions in response to the latest pardon, in which a man convicted of election fraud was pardoned by a president who constantly touts the unfounded claim such fraud is an urgent epidemic.

D'Souza ultimately admitted to donating tens of thousands of dollars to a U.S. Senate campaign, well above the individual contributions limit of $5,000, by funneling money to other people and donating in their names.

Some say D'Souza was unfairly targeted because he is a conservative.

D'Souza, 57, a caustic critic of former president Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, was fined $30,000 and sentenced in September 2014 to five years of probation for making illegal campaign contributions. Then-Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who prosecuted the case, emphatically denied any political motivation.

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"D'SOUZA was sentenced today before U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman", the statement said. In an op-ed days later, D'Souza himself called for O'Donnell's arrest and prosecution if she violated campaign finance law like he did. The career prosecutors and agents did their job.

This would be Mr Trump's fifth full pardon.

Mr. Trump also commuted the sentence of Sholom Rubashkin, the former CEO of what was America's largest kosher slaughterhouse and meat-packing plant.

Trump has granted five pardons since taking office including one to Joe Arpaio, a Trump supporter who was convicted of contempt of court for racially profiling Hispanics while serving as a sheriff in Arizona. Conservative Republicans had sought a pardon for Libby for years after Cheney was unable to persuade Republican President George W. Bush to grant one.

The remarkable thing about Trump's pardons is that majority have been extremely political and either sent political messages or settled political scores. "He doesn't care about the rule of law".

Susan Hennessey, managing editor of the Brookings Institution Lawfare blog, said Trump was using the pardon power to "dole out transactional favors". She was also a star on Trump's "The Apprentice" franchise.

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