Trump grants pardon to General Michael Flynn

By ANTHONY MIRAGLIOTTA
On December 1, 2020

Photo courtesy of Defense Intelligence Agency, Wikipedia

President Donald Trump has granted a presidential pardon to his former National Security Advisor, General Michael Flynn, which he announced on Nov. 25.

“It is my Great Honor to announce that General Michael T. Flynn has been granted a Full Pardon,” Trump wrote on Twitter. Trump has long said that the Flynn scandal was politically motivated.

Flynn has twice pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about conversations he'd had with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

On Jan. 5, 2017, President Barack Obama and other top officials met in the oval office to discuss possible election interference. After this meeting was over, numerous Obama aides, such as FBI Director James Comey and Vice President Joe Biden, allegedly stayed back to talk about Flynn, who had a very close relationship with Kislyak. 

Obama made it clear that he thought about treating Flynn differently since he now knew about the phone calls. Comey brought up the Logan Act, but nothing about criminal charges. Flynn had previously served under the Obama administration and he fired Flynn in 2014. 

Flynn was Trump’s first pick for NSA, but he was quickly succeeded by H.R. McMaster who later resigned in May 2018. Flynn is a decorated war hero, as he served in the military and served our country honorably. It is a disgrace what Flynn had to put up with.

The FBI was out to get Flynn. On Jan. 24, 2017, internal FBI documents show that they discussed interviewing Flynn to “get him to lie” and “get him fired.” These notes were handwritten by FBI Director James Comey, whom Trump fired later that year. 

The FBI should never be used as a political tool, but rather as a non-partisan organization to serve justice. This proves that Obama was aware of then-incoming NSA Flynn wiretapped phone calls with Kislyak from December 2016.

In May 2020, the U.S. Department of Justice announced it would drop all charges against Flynn. However, D.C. Circuit Judge Emmet Sullivan ruled the process must be delayed. Sullivan was an extremely biased judge towards Flynn and was in favor of a prosecution. 

Flynn’s attorney, Sidney Powell, who is also helping the president in his legal battles against fraud, demanded Sullivan to resign. Judge Sullivan is incapable of understanding the Constitution or the rule of law and he has no place in a court of law.

Many Republicans applauded Trump’s actions for granting a pardon to Flynn while Democrats condemned it. Regarding the circumstances, it is extremely shameful that Democrats are condemning this as Flynn has been the target of Democrats since he took office. 

Many Democrats took to social media saying Trump is abusing his pardon power. In comparison to Trump and Obama, Obama had used the pardon power 212 times and commuted over 1,700 sentences. Trump has used the pardon power around 28 times and commuted 16 sentences. Historically speaking, Trump rarely uses his pardon power compared to other presidents. Trump has not abused his pardon power. 

What makes lawmakers believe that Trump is abusing his power is that he is pardoning individuals at any time he wants. Usually, presidents pardon people at the end of their term, but there is no rule stating that a sitting president has to pardon people at the end of their term in the White House.

What happened to Flynn should never happen to another politician ever again. Flynn went through years full of lies, all because he was facing a corrupt and biased judge.

 

amiragli@ramapo.edu

 

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