Trump believes he can pardon himself

Donald Trump says he has the “absolute power” to grant himself presidential pardon, while assuring that he has no reason to do so. The US president maintains that he has “done nothing wrong” to justify the “unconstitutional” investigation of the special prosecutor Robert Mueller.

“As many legal scholars say, I have the absolute power to pardon myself, but why should I do it when I have nothing to reproach myself with? Donald Trump wrote in one of his morning tweets, deploring “the endless witch hunt” led by prosecutor Mueller against him.

“The appointment of the special prosecutor is totally unconstitutional,” he added in another message a few minutes later. “Despite that, we play the game because I, unlike the Democrats, did nothing wrong.”

With this statement about his right to pardon himself, President Trump rushes into an open door Sunday by his lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, during interviews given to political broadcasts of major US networks.

On ABC’s (US) This Week, Giuliani, who has been representing the president on the special prosecutor’s case for just a few weeks, said for example that Mr. Trump “probably” had the right to pardon himself, while assuring that he had “no intention” to do so.

“It would simply be unthinkable for the US President to gruffle himself,” the former New York Mayor told NBC’s Meet the Press. “That would probably immediately lead to an impeachment. ”

Giuliani made the remarks after the New York Times revealed on Saturday that Trump’s lawyers argued in a January letter to Prosecutor Mueller that the US president can not be accused of obstructing justice. because he has the power to stop this investigation.

Judge and party

Even if President Trump’s statements seem counter-intuitive, under the principle that the same person can not be a judge and a party, the reality is that the constitutional legality of such a defense has never been tested in court. The idea that “many legal experts” support this hypothesis is also not proven.

Even before the president started the debate, the leader of the Republican majority in the House of Representatives, Kevin McCarthy, told the CNN network that no president should pardon himself.