Dem senator 'anxious to hear' if Supreme Court pick thinks Trump can pardon himself
Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) on Sunday said she is "anxious" to hear if President Trump's Supreme Court nominee thinks the president can pardon himself. "I'm so anxious to hear whatever this nominee has to say," Cantwell said on NBC's "Meet the Press." "Is the president able to pardon himself?"Cantwell said she was concerned about whether a potential nominee would "fight to protect" special counsel Robert Mueller in his investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.
Two Oregon ranchers whose sentencing on arson convictions sparked the 2016 armed occupation of a wildlife refuge were due to return home on Wednesday, after being pardoned by U.S. President Donald Trump, the family said in a statement.
The 41-day standoff, which occurred in response to the jailing of the ranchers for setting a fire that spread to public land, marked a flare-up in the long-simmering dispute over federal land policies in the U.S. West. It turned deadly when police shot one of the occupiers.
3 officers injured, gunman fatally shot in Illinois standoff
A suburban Chicago police officer fatally shot a man who fired at officers, wounding three, during an overnight standoff. The officers' injuries are not life threatening. The Chicago Tribune reports that the standoff began late Tuesday when police were called to a home in South Elgin, about 40 miles northwest of Chicago, for a report of shots fired. Police Sgt. Mike Doty says at least two shotgun blasts were fired at officers as they approached.South Elgin Police Sgt. Mike Doty says 52-year-old Frank Dripps immediately fired a shotgun at officers as they responded to a call of shots fired at the condominium building about 40 miles (65 kilometers) northwest of Chicago late Tuesday.
The family of jailed rancher Dwight Hammond, 76, and his son, Steven, 49, in a statement late Tuesday thanked Trump.
"Our family is grateful to the president and all who worked to make this possible," the statement read. "We will continue on our path, continue ranching and continue believing in America."
The pair were expected to arrive at Burns Municipal Airport in southeastern Oregon, about 120 miles (190 km) east of Bend, after on Wednesday morning, the family statement said.
The ranchers were convicted in 2012 for setting a fire that spread onto public land, after years of disputes with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. The Hammonds said they were using standard brush-control techniques, but federal prosecutors said that in at least one instance they were trying to hide evidence of the slaughtering of a herd of deer.
Michael Cohen tells friends he doesn't think Trump would pardon him
Michael Cohen has recently told friends that he is pessimistic that President Donald Trump will offer him a pardon -- one more indication that Cohen does not believe his former boss will have his back. In a phone call with a friend several days before he was interviewed by ABC News' George Stephanopoulos last weekend, Cohen -- who was Trump's personal attorney for years and is currently under criminal investigation in New York -- said he did not believe Trump would wipe his slate clean using the presidential pardon. Cohen has not been charged with any wrongdoing. "I brought up the pardon, and he said, 'I don't think so.
They were initially sentenced to less than the legal minimum five years in prison by a judge who said the minimum was too harsh. Following an appeal by prosecutors, a different judge ordered the men back to prison to serve the full five years, sparking protests and the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.
The White House on Tuesday called that decision "unjust." It noted that Dwight Hammond had served about three years in prison and Steven had served four.
Jennifer Rokala, executive director of the Center for Western Priorities, in a statement expressed dismay at the pardon, calling the Hammonds "lawless extremists."
The leaders of the Malheur standoff, including activists Ammon and Ryan Bundy, were cleared of federal charges for their role in the protest.
The pardons are the latest in a series that have raised questions about whether Trump is using the power to reward supporters. Others have included conservative pundit Dinesh D'Souza, for campaign finance crimes, and former Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio, who campaigned for Trump before being convicted in a case regarding racial profiling.
(Reporting by Scott Malone in Boston; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)
The Quest to Get a Pardon in the Trump Era: ‘It’s Who You Know’ .
Pardon seekers around the country are watching as President Trump helps people who have celebrity endorsements. And they are taking notes.He even has a letter of support from his probation officer.