Can President Trump Really Pardon Himself?

Rudy Giuliani: President Trump could pardon himself, but he probably wouldn’t

President Trump declared on Monday that the appointment of the special counsel in the Russian Federation investigation is "totally UNCONSTITUTIONAL!" and asserted that he has the power to pardon himself, raising the prospect that he might take extraordinary action to immunise himself from the ongoing probe.

Trump's team has sought to discredit special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling into the 2016 election.

Trump's legal team also argues that the president could not have committed obstruction because, they say, he has absolute authority over all federal investigations.

His lead attorney, Rudy Giuliani, says the commander in chief "probably does" have the legal ability to take such an action.

No president has attempted to pardon himself, but some lawyers have opined on the topic.

While Mueller has indicted 19 people and three companies in his year-old investigation, including several former top campaign aides to Trump, the investigation has so far made no allegations against the president himself.

He added: "He has no need to do it, he's done nothing wrong".

"The appointment of the special counsel is totally unconstitutional", he tweeted.

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Trump's team and allies have waged a public relations campaign against Mueller and the Justice Department to discredit the investigation and soften the impact of the special counsel's potential findings.

Trump's tweet came in response to a New York Times report about a 20-page letter to Mueller. Charles E. Grassley, Iowa Republican, told CNN the president should hire a new lawyer if he's getting legal advice about self-pardons.

Many legal scholars dispute the idea that a President can not obstruct justice.

"He's got to have the discipline to put a stop to it, or we're going to have to do everything we can, including some things that I don't think we'd want to talk about right now, to try to, to try to appeal to have it stopped", he said.

"I said, you know very theoretically, the answer is the President can't be prosecuted for anything", Giuliani said on CNN's "Cuomo Prime Time".

Article II of the Constitution states that the president "shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States, except in cases of impeachment".

'The basic argument on the side that says he can do it is, look at the Constitution and it doesn't say he can't. "It's an abuse of the pardon power for the president to self-pardon".

In this May 5, 2018, file photo, Rudy Giuliani, an attorney for President Donald Trump, speaks at the Iran Freedom Convention for Human Rights and democracy in Washington. "If presidents had the power to pardon themselves, we'd no longer be a democracy", Schumer said.

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