President Trump is reportedly expected to issue between 50 and 100 commutations and pardons before he leaves office this week.
Sources suggest that the announcement of the pardons will likely come in one large batch on Tuesday, but there is a slight chance the White House will wait to make them official Wednesday morning. The president has until noon on Wednesday to do so.
There was apparently a meeting at the White House on Sunday afternoon to finalize the growing list of pardons and commutations. But sources with knowledge of the process say Trump is not expected to grant protective pardons for any members of his family, nor is he expected to attempt to issue a pardon for himself.
Despite an aggressive campaign by WikiLeaks to try to secure a pardon for its founder Julian Assange, the president is not expected to give him one.
The Justice Department has maintained that Assange should face trial on 18 charges, put forth by the Obama administration in 2010, centered on conspiring to breach government computers and violate the Espionage Act. The charges carry a maximum of 175 years in prison.
Former Trump associate Steve Bannon is described as being “TBD.”
Bannon, a former adviser to Trump and an architect of his 2016 campaign, was arrested on fraud charges over the summer. Bannon pleaded not guilty in federal court in Manhattan after being indicted with three others who were accused of defrauding donors to the online fundraising campaign known as “We Build the Wall” that raised $25 million.
Bannon, 66, was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, each of which carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.
The president has already issued several high-profile pardons and commutations during his administration.
Just last month, the president pardoned former California GOP Rep. Duncan Hunter, who was sentenced to 11 months in prison and three years of supervised probation after pleading guilty to a corruption charge, as well as former GOP Rep. Chris Collins, who was sentenced to 26 months in prison for securities fraud.
Trump also pardoned former campaign aide George Papadopoulos, who had been convicted of making false statements during the Mueller investigation.
The White House said Tuesday that Papadopoulos had been charged with a “process-related crime” even though “Mueller stated in his report that he found no evidence of collusion in connection with Russia’s attempts to interfere in the election.”
Just before Christmas, the president pardoned more than two dozen other individuals – including his 2016 campaign manager Paul Manafort.
Before Thanksgiving, the president also delivered a critical pardon to his former White House national security adviser Michael Flynn, who also pleaded guilty twice to making false statements as part of Mueller’s investigation.
Also last month, Trump pardoned Charles Kushner, the father of Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who was convicted and sentenced to two years for preparing false tax returns, witness retaliation and making false statements to the Federal Election Commission, and Margaret Hunter, the wife of former Congressman Hunter. Ms. Hunter pleaded guilty in 2019 to one count of conspiracy to misuse campaign funds for personal expenses and was sentenced to three years of probation.