President Donald Trump argued on Monday that he has the constitutional power to pardon himself but won’t need to because he’s “done nothing wrong.”
“As has been stated by numerous legal scholars, I have the absolute right to PARDON myself,” the president tweeted on Monday, while also lamenting that the ongoing “Witch Hunt” Russia investigation moves forward ahead of the fall midterm elections.
As has been stated by numerous legal scholars, I have the absolute right to PARDON myself, but why would I do that when I have done nothing wrong? In the meantime, the never ending Witch Hunt, led by 13 very Angry and Conflicted Democrats (& others) continues into the mid-terms!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 4, 2018
Trump’s claim comes a few days after The New York Times published a letter drafted by the president’s legal team and sent to the special counsel, arguing that their client has sweeping powers that include the ability to pardon himself.
The letter also argues that the president cannot obstruct justice due to his broad presidential authority.
“Ensuring that the office remains sacred and above the fray of shifting political winds and gamesmanship is of critical importance,” Trump’s lawyers wrote, adding that the Constitution gives the president the power to “terminate the inquiry, or even exercise his power to pardon.”
Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani took things to an extreme level over the weekend, claiming the president has such broad powers that even if he killed a former FBI director he wouldn’t face prosecution while in office.
“In no case can he be subpoenaed or indicted,” Giuliani told HuffPost. ”I don’t know how you can indict while he’s in office. No matter what it is.”
“If he shot James Comey, he’d be impeached the next day,” he added. “Impeach him, and then you can do whatever you want to do to him.”