Former President Donald Trump said in an NBC interview snippet he could have pardoned himself before departing the White House in 2021 and that it’s “very unlikely” he’ll pardon himself if elected president again, referencing four indictments he faces that will likely conclude after the next presidential election.
The snippet, which is from an interview with new Meet the Press moderator Kristen Welker that will air in full Sunday, featured the former president saying he wouldn’t pardon himself because he believes he has done nothing to warrant the indictments against him.
Trump claimed in his last day of office, he could have somehow pardoned himself and avoided “fake charges” he said were levied by the Biden Administration—though the former president’s first indictment didn’t materialize until more than two years after he left office.
Trump recalled telling lawyers, “The last thing I’d ever do is give myself a pardon,” noting in the NBC interview that such a move would have made him look “terrible,” though he did not completely rule it out.
Trump chimed in on the news of Hunter Biden’s indictment on three federal gun charges Thursday, maintaining his repeated stance that there are two justice systems—one that berates him and one that favors President Joe Biden and his colleagues. He called the president’s son’s plea agreement, which fell through more than a month ago and could have helped Biden avoid some of the charges, “the deal of the century.”
Trump’s four indictments include a total of 91 federal and state charges against him that would equate to $11.2 million in fines if he were convicted of every one. The indictments include a case alleging hush-money payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels, a separate federal case that Trump mishandled classified national defense documents, another federal case alleging Trump attempted to overturn the 2020 presidential election and a state-level case accusing him of attempting to overturn his electoral defeat in Georgia. Since they involve state-level charges, Trump could not pardon himself in the hush-money or Georgia cases even if again elected president.