The Problem of Donald Trump’s Constitution, Part II: The Prospect of an Arpaio Pardon
August 24, 2017

“President Trump seems enthralled by his possession of the pardon power, and now he has in mind Joe Arpaio, the former sheriff of Maricopa County in Arizona, as the first object of his beneficence. He entertained his Phoenix political rally with the suggestion Arpaio merited a pardon; he hinted that he would grant one. Arpaio was, the President declared, ‘convicted for doing his job.’ The news the following day included a report that the White House had prepared pardon papers. Should Trump follow through, it would be a fateful step for this presidency. While he has rejoiced over the ‘complete’ scope of the pardon power, he might not know or fully appreciate the risks of his enthusiasm.  One hopes that the White House Counsel, among others, sets him straight.”

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