Republican House Speaker says Trump shouldn't pardon himself
U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan said on Wednesday that President Donald Trump should not pardon himself, becoming the second Republican leader in Congress to balk at the president's assertion that he had "absolute" power to do so, APA reports quoting Reuters.
Ryan also dismissed another of Trump’s contentions - that the FBI and Justice Department planted an informant in his 2016 presidential campaign. He said he agreed with the assertion by U.S. Representative Trey Gowdy, the Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee, that federal authorities had acted properly.
“I think Chairman Gowdy’s initial assessment is accurate, but we have more digging to do,” Ryan said.
Ryan, who is not seeking re-election, had a strained relationship with Trump during the campaign but has avoided taking a confrontational approach with him since he took office.
Asked whether Trump can legally pardon himself, Ryan told reporters at the U.S. Capitol: “I don’t know the technical answer to that question but obviously he shouldn’t. No one is above the law.”
Trump made the pardon assertion in a series of Twitter posts on Monday in which he criticized federal Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s criminal probe of whether his 2016 presidential campaign colluded with Russia to sway the election.
“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?” Trump said.
In another tweet he called Mueller’s appointment “totally UNCONSTITUTIONAL.”
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