Could Trump Issue Pardon for Himself?

Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

( – Mark Levin, a pro-Trump attorney, has claimed that if former President Donald Trump manages to win the presidential election in 2024 then he would have the option of pardoning himself from any criminal charges in Georgia.

However, despite Levin’s claims, not everyone believes this to be the case. According to a recent report from Newsweek, legal scholar Jonathan Turley argued that the Constitution would not allow a pardon from Trump to apply to state convictions. Other experts have reportedly pointed out that it’s hard to say what will happen at this point, since there would be no precedent for Trump’s situation.

Trump was first indicted in Georgia on Monday following Fulton County’s grand jury’s decision to file charges. In this particular case, Trump is joined by 18 other defendants under racketeering charges. He also faces three other indictments, one related to falsifying business records in a hush-money case in New York, another over his alleged mishandling of classified documents in Miami, and a third case that is dealing on a federal level with Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 presidential election.

If Trump wins back the White House, then as the sitting president, he is going to be given the power to pardon and erase federal convictions. These powers do not extend to state criminal cases, as argued by Turley. Still, Levin claimed that Trump’s federal authority is more important than state laws, according to the Supremacy Clause.

Levin took to X, formerly known as Twitter, to argue that there is no language in the Constitution on whether or not it is possible for a president to be formally charged. This is because previously, the Department of Justice was opposed to the indictment of sitting presidents. This could also be applied to state cases, which would allow Trump to pardon himself in Georgia, according to Levin.

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